Title

To Be or Not To Be Out in the Classroom: Exploring Communication Privacy Management Strategies of Lesbian, Gay, and Queer College Teachers

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2015

Department

Communication Studies

Abstract

Lesbian, gay, and queer (LGQ) teachers often deal with the tension between disclosing and concealing their sexual orientations in the college classroom. This article presents the results of a qualitative interview study with 29 self-identified LGQ college teachers about their choices to disclose or conceal their sexual identities. Using Communication Privacy Management (CPM) as a theoretical framework, interview transcripts were thematically analyzed for privacy rule criteria and disclosure/concealment strategies. This study contributes to previous understanding of CPM by magnifying five strategies for disclosing or concealing sexual identity: selection, reciprocity, ambiguity, deflection, and avoidance. These findings are discussed in greater detail, and implications for CPM theory and teacher sexual identity disclosure in the classroom are further explored.

Publication Title

Communication Education

DOI

10.1080/03634523.2015.1014385