Issues related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights have for a long time been taboo in Catholic Italy, and they began to be debated in the mainstream media only after the organisation of a gay pride march in Rome during the 2000 jubilee. In the years since, the subject has become a bone of contention between the centre-left and the centre-right parties. In particular, a heated debate developed before and immediately after the 2006 parliamentary elections, when the centre–left coalition included parties – such as the Partito Radicale (Radical Party) and Rifondazione Comunista (Communist Refoundation) – willing to approve a law giving legal recognition to same-sex couples, while, on the other hand, the centre-right relied strongly on ‘traditional values’ in order to garner votes. After that discussion, the issue was revived only during the campaign for the 2013 elections, when Nichi Vendola, the former Communist – and openly gay – leader of Sinistra, Ecologia e Libertà (the Left Ecology and Freedom), included in the centre–left coalition, put the problem on the political agenda again, without success in policy terms. This article will analyse the frames adopted by the various political actors to address the issue in the two campaigns, trying to understand the peculiarities of the two phases of the debate. In particular, it will show that there has been an evolution in the political actors’ ideas of marriage that could lead to the adoption of a law on same-sex civil unions in Italy in the near future.

The debate about same-sex marriages/civil unions in Italy’s 2006 and 2013 electoral campaigns

OZZANO, LUCA
2015

Abstract

Issues related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights have for a long time been taboo in Catholic Italy, and they began to be debated in the mainstream media only after the organisation of a gay pride march in Rome during the 2000 jubilee. In the years since, the subject has become a bone of contention between the centre-left and the centre-right parties. In particular, a heated debate developed before and immediately after the 2006 parliamentary elections, when the centre–left coalition included parties – such as the Partito Radicale (Radical Party) and Rifondazione Comunista (Communist Refoundation) – willing to approve a law giving legal recognition to same-sex couples, while, on the other hand, the centre-right relied strongly on ‘traditional values’ in order to garner votes. After that discussion, the issue was revived only during the campaign for the 2013 elections, when Nichi Vendola, the former Communist – and openly gay – leader of Sinistra, Ecologia e Libertà (the Left Ecology and Freedom), included in the centre–left coalition, put the problem on the political agenda again, without success in policy terms. This article will analyse the frames adopted by the various political actors to address the issue in the two campaigns, trying to understand the peculiarities of the two phases of the debate. In particular, it will show that there has been an evolution in the political actors’ ideas of marriage that could lead to the adoption of a law on same-sex civil unions in Italy in the near future.
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LGBT, same-sex unions, Italy, public debate
Ozzano, L
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1526017
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