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Centre of African Studies: Events


The Internet and sexuality in Cameroon. An extension of male domination and sexual inequalities?

The Internet and sexuality in Cameroon. An extension of male domination and sexual inequalities?
Speaker: Larissa Kojoué # FPAE (Yaoundé)/LAM (Bordeaux)/SESSTIM (Marseille)
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Date and Time
20th Mar 2019 16:10 - 20th Mar 2019 17:30
Seminar rooms 1 & 2, Chrystal Macmillan Building, George Square, Edinburgh, EH8 9LD

The use of the internet is deeply rooted in Cameroonians daily habits, especially the under 30s. This openness to the world is not without consequences on collective and individual development, including on sexual life. "Wild Pepper", "sofa party", "fuck between guys", are few illustrative names of whatsapp and facebook groups available online in Cameroon. In a context where sexuality remains extremely framed by law, tradition and religious norms, the internet appears as an unexpected opened door for people who want to enjoy their sexuality freely. It is also a mirror that allows to understand sociological transformations related to gender, sexuality, power, political participation, etc.

We have undertaken an ethnographic-type of survey in two major cities (Yaounde and Douala). “The Kiss survey” from October 2017 to March 2018 consisted in standardized questionnaires, online observations and chat, and interviews with internet users over 18 living in Cameroon and sexually active. Our results show that the internet does not sexually impact men, women and sexual and gender groups in the same way. The Internet represents a continuum area of vulnerability for women, low/rural class users and sexual minorities. It is a source of pleasure firstly for relatively well educated men, it favors confusion with traditional sexual benchmarks and deepens gender and sexual inequalities. A real political shift is however able to change the social and economic environment for gender and sexual minorities.

Freshers 2013