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Year: 2006 Type: Article Language: English

Stigma and legal sanctions against homosexuality, as well as gender norms among men who have sex with men, lead to an emphasis on aggression, power play and penetration in male-to-male sex in India. This in turn contributes to low levels of condom use among men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people, and increases the risk of HIV and ill-health. This article explores the potential for promotion of more sensuous, pleasurable, and communicative sex which could also be safer. The article draws on the author’s research as well as on his personal experience working as a masseur in Kolkata Massage parlours which provide commercial sexual services to male clients. Strategies are proposed for creating safer social and sexual spaces for MSM, including those working in the sex industry. The findings are being used to develop behaviour change communication (BCC) strategies and material to promote elements of sensuousness in male-to-male sex.

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