100%(6)6 out of 6 people found this document helpful
This preview shows page 1 - 3 out of 5 pages.
Professor HandleyCore 102December 5, 2014Angels in AmericaIn Tony Kushner's Angels in America, Joe, Roy, Louis, and Harper live public and private lives that are fairly different. In fact, often the relationship between these public and private realms is one of conflict, one of opposition: Roy's sexual identity intrudes on his political life; Joe's and Louis' political identities disrupt their personal relationship; Joe's moral convictions damage his political career. This antagonistic relationship between the public and private realms signifies a deeper disparity between different identity groups, and these disparities are the obstacles between each character and his goal. For Joe, Roy, Louis, and Harper, the private realmof existence intrudes and impedes the public realm of existence and these interferences signify the unaccommodating nature of the public sphere.Roy denies his sexual identity in order to preserve his political clout because society deniespolitical agency to homosexuals. According to Roy, “Homosexuals are not men who sleep with other men... [Homosexuals are men] Who have zero clout. Does this sound like me, Henry?” (Part 1, Act 1, Scene 9). Sexuality is not defined by sexual orientation, but by political clout. Sexuality is defined by power, and because Roy is powerful, he cannot be homosexual. Roy's chain of logic signifies two things. First, Roy is in complete denial of his sexual identity. By rejecting the very definition of homosexuality and redefining it to exclude him, Roy rejects his homosexuality. According to Roy, “Roy Cohn is a heterosexual man, Henry, who fucks around
with guys” (Part 1, Act 1, Scene 9). Second, Roy does not believe that homosexuals can have political clout. Rather than accepting his sexual identity, Roy condemns homosexuals as “men who in fifteen years of trying cannot pass a pissant antidiscrimination bill through City Council.