Skeletons in the Closets: Gay Themes in Philippine Fictions in English

Christopher Yap Wright

National University, Philippines. ORCID: 0000-0002-2230-0798.  Email:

 Volume 9, Number 2, 2017 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v9n2.30

Received May 11, 2017; Revised July 2, 2017; Accepted July 10, 2017; Published August 17, 2017


The study aimed to ascertain the portrayal of gay identity in the selected Philippine Anglophone fictions titled “The Chamber of the Sea,” “The Doll,” and “The Husband” through exploring their literary themes. Most importantly, it sought to determine the texts’ presentations of gay-self through Imaging with Fassinger and McCarn’s Model of Gay Individual Identity Development. Further, the predominant themes of denial of the self, eroticism towards others, and tragedy of discriminations were identified and explored as the study examined the Filipino gay protagonists’ significant experiences. The study revealed that the literary gay-self imaging affirmed the homosexual representations in the Philippine Anglophone fictions. Such representations were both seen in ghostly and implicit manners through the gay male characters namely, Tio Teban from “The Chamber of the Sea,” Elpidio from “The Husband,” and Narciso a.k.a Boy/ Sising from “The Doll.” Also, the central characters’ setbacks and unfinished self-issues—the skeletons in their closets, including their struggles with being different as to their physical, emotional, and sexual interests toward their co-species were shown. Despite the differences of the authors, the Filipino gays through their experiences had common familial and societal struggles to survive. This study has clear implications in the understanding of the Filipino gay literary characters in fictions.

Keywords: Filipino Gays, Queer Literature, Gay-Self Imaging, Gay Themes.

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