Stephen Fry


We read the wonderful piece by Stephen Fry entitled “Have you Heard of Oscar Wilde?” (published in the book, “The Library Book”, Profile Books 2012), which links to the post on “Flying Books” (the pleasure of reading) and your project area on homosexuality.  As you appreciated Stephen Fry’s writing, I think you will certainly appreciate the two following videos.  Watch them and for the first one you can be assisted by the tapescript.

Oscar Wilde helped Stephen Fry confront his sexuality

Reparative Therapy

For the BBC Stephen Fry looks at what it means to be gay in different corners of the world.  Stephen Fry reflects back on just how much has changed for gay people during his lifetime. He meets Elton John and David Furnish, the couple who inspired Stephen to be open about his sexuality as well as many others. Stephen travels to Uganda, where the government is considering a new law that would make homosexuality a capital crime – putting gay people to death for their sexuality. Stephen meets the men and women targeted by this proposed law and finds out the impact it is already having on their lives. Stephen also travels to the USA to explore ‘reparative therapy’, which claims to offer a ‘cure’ for being gay. Whilst in the states, he looks at how Hollywood deals with the gay issue by talking to Neil Patrick Harris, an openly gay man who continues to land leading roles.

Stephen Fry exposes “ex-gay” therapy as bogus and terrible.

Nicolosi describes being gay as based on “trauma” and as something that can be “resolved” through the therapy he offers — for $140 a session. But perhaps the most devastating revelation in the segment is when Nicolosi tells Fry that more than 60 percent of his clients are teenagers. A growing number of states – including California, where Nicolosi practices — have banned “ex-gay” therapy for minors, citing its harmful impact and well-documented abuses among practitioners.

Fry also speaks with one of Nicolosi’s former “patients,” who, surprise, is still gay and now campaigns against the dangers of “ex-gay” therapy.

A blogger, Rich Juzwiak, writes:

Several things Nicolosi says about his practice, which attempts to exorcise his patients of homosexuality, ring false even for someone whose expertise lies not in a medical degree but his own gayness. Nicolosi says he believes that homosexuality is a product of nurture, as if nurture is extricable from nature to begin with, and as if an event that could shape the structure of how one loves isn’t as fundamental to that person’s existence as any genetic code.

He says that his organization believes that being gay is “based on trauma.” I am lucky to have had none as a child—until other kids decided I was gay and ridiculed me for it.

He says that in boys, homosexuality is rooted to the father and his failure to deliver the “three A’s: attention, affection, approval.” I received all three from my father—not always, not for everything, but often enough so that I never doubted their existence even in their immediate absence.


Explaining his reasons for wanting to do the documentary, Stephen said it was down to him wanting to see the attitudes towards homosexuality from some of the biggest countries in the world.

“I know to some it can seem something that one bores on about, the nature of being gay and the acceptance in society of gay people,” he said.

“At the moment around the world, we seem to be taking a step forward as we are in Britain – just allowing people to get on with their lives and their loves – and in other parts of the world, two steps are being taken back so I wanted to take a kind of snapshot of what it was like around the world at the moment in various big important countries and it was fascinating.”

the star also reflected on those in the public eye who hide their sexual orientation, saying: “It’s very difficult, I have actor friends who are gay whose British agents say it’s fine and whose American agents say ‘you come out, you’re dead’.

“I did interview an extraordinary man whose job is to ‘de-gay’ people’s accents.”

Asked about his own love life, Fry revealed: “I have [got love in my life] I’m happy to say. That’s what it’s about, people are obsessed with the fact that being gay is about sex but it is about love and that’s the point.”   (Source:

Dealing with the theme of homophobia and the general rejection of the idea of a person’s right to choose for their sexual inclination forces us to deal with the terrible crime of “corrective” rape, a crime that happens in Italy as it does in other parts of the world.

“Corrective” rape

Stephen meets a Ugandan lesbian whose life has been horrifically altered by ‘corrective’ rape.

The brutality, ignorance, stupidity and horror that these videos reveal are mind-boggling and leave me speechless.


This entry was posted in Homophobia, Our School Projects. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Stephen Fry

  1. cristianaziraldo says:

    Corrective rape and reparative therapy.

    Reparative therapy, also known as conversion therapy or reorientation therapy, is a psychological treatment that aims to change sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual or to eliminate homosexual desires and behaviours of a person. The development of this treatment dates back many years ago and one of the most famous therapist who dealt with it was Sigmund Freud: as he wrote in 1920 in “The Psychogenesis of a Case of Homosexuality in a Woman“, he was convinced that it was possible to change only under unusually favourable conditions and just when homosexuality was an illness or a neurotic conflict. Although lots of psychoanalysts tried to change people sexual orientation, the term “reparative therapy” born just in 1983 from a Elizabeth Moberly’s statement. In according to Jack Drescher, the term refers to a specific kind of treatment which is associated with her, but even with Joseph Nicolosi who wrote in 1991 “Reparative therapy of male homosexuality: a new clinical approach”, a book where he introduced the term “reparative therapy” meant as a way of converting gay people to heterosexual. At the beginning, these types of treatments received a large approval, but then they became the source of great controversy in the United States, but even in other countries because there are lots of therapist who think that it is harmful for LGBT people: in fact people who have undergone conversion therapy have reported increased anxiety, depression, and in some cases, suicidal ideation. To this point the American Psychiatric Association has declared that the potential risks of reparative therapy are great, including depression, anxiety and self-destructive behaviour.

    Lara De Piero 5H

  2. cristianaziraldo says:


    “Corrective rape is a hate crime in which people are raped because of their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity” (source: Wikipedia)
    Heterosexual people who despise those have a homosexual orientation use usually corrective rape in order to “cure their illness”. Some are convinced that homosexuality is a choice due to some kind of trauma and that it can be cured with some treatment (which includes corrective therapy).
    The term “corrective rape” was coined in South Africa after the aggression of lesbian girls in order to make them straight again.
    One of the victims became a symbol for the LGBT-rights activists. Her name was Eudy Simelane. She was a football player and she was in the South-African women’s National Team, where she played the role of midfielder. Her life was not easy, but she had always fought for her rights and she came out openly. On the night of 28th April 2008 her half-naked body was found in a park in the immediate surrounding of Johannesburg. She was abducted, gang raped, beaten and stabbed 25 times in the face, chest and legs. The report of the coroner declared that the type of injuries and wounds were typical of a hate crime with a sexual background. After her murder the crimes against homosexual women increased drastically. This episode created a scandal, because of the football world cup in 2010 and it attracted the media attention all over the world. Another case was that of Noxolo Nogwaza, 24 years old. In 2011 she was raped and stabbed multiple times with glass shards. Her skull was shuttered and her eyes were torn out. This also rose an issue: why do such things happen in the XXI Century? The answer is not easy to be found: in some cases, men have the so-called “complex of God”, they need to feel powerful and raping women (who they consider inferior and weak) makes them feel powerful. Others have some kind of fear of homosexuality, created by culture or popular belief, but often by religion. This fear, this homophobia, can be compared to racism, because in both cases people fear what they do not comprehend, what they perceive as out of their ordinary life. Sometimes (always in South Africa) these fears are combined, because in the majority of crimes the victims are black lesbian.

    A homosexual person is not an abomination. The real abomination is the person who uses a terrible crime such as corrective rape, which is inhuman, cruel and heartless and should be harshly punished.
    Corrective rape or anything that has something to do with reparative therapy is not just a problem that concerns crime, but it is even a social and cultural problem. As a matter of fact, the countries that make few efforts to guarantee protection to homosexual people and to prevent discrimination, are the most hit by this phenomenon. South Africa is a perfect example, although nowadays things are getting slightly better.

    Sara Pavan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.