Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity as Cross-Cutting Identities in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: the Experience of LGBTQ Israeli Human Rights Activists



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Emanating from literature on social identity theory, intersectionality theory, gender and sexuality, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, this research examines sexual orientation and gender identity as cross-cutting identities through the experiences of LGBTQ Israeli human rights activists. Data for this qualitative study were collected through two months of fieldwork in Israel-Palestine interviewing ten LGBTQ Israeli human rights activists. The methodology and research design utilized for this analysis was predicated upon an interpretive, constructivist, and phenomenological approach. Questions examined include how sexual orientation and gender identity are experienced on a personal level, individual interactions between LGBTQ Israelis and LGBTQ Palestinians, and how being LGBTQ influences perspective on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Findings suggest that cross-categorization has the greatest potential when obstructive elements such as racism, nationalism, arrogance, condescension, pride, ethnocentrism, narcissism, ulterior motives, savior-like attitudes, and hero mentalities are mitigated.