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The Pressure to Cover by Kenji Yoshino

            The article "The Pressure to Cover," by Kenji Yoshino is an excerpt from his book Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights. The article was published in The New York Times Magazine on January 15th, 2006. An important fact about Yoshino is that he is a Japanese homosexual as well as a professor at Yale Law School. In his article, Yoshino states that "Discrimination used to take aim at entire social groups. Now it is directed at the members of those groups who refuse to assimilate to the mainstream" (Yoshino 32).
             Yoshino begins his article with a personal anecdote about covering. He recalls that when he began teaching at Yale University's Law School in 1998, a colleague told him that he should be a homosexual professional not a professional homosexual. Yoshino distinguishes the two, stating that a homosexual professional is a professor who happens to be gay while a professional homosexual is a gay professor who made his work about gay rights (Yoshino 32). Yoshino gives us two other examples of people hiding their individual identities to fit into the mainstream; female professors with children and religious students. The females, who to have children, live with the expectation that they don't reference their children at work because they want to be seen as scholars first and mothers second. Similarly, religious students were afraid of announcing their beliefs because they feared others would think they were less intelligent. .
             Yoshino writes about how he felt the pressure to not talk about gay topics or be openly gay. He was frustrated because long after he came out he felt the pressure to conform to straight norms. This shows that even though Yoshino had been comfortable with being a homosexual for so long he still did not feel like it was okay for him to express his homosexual views at his work place. Yoshino uses the term "Mesearch" to describe research on things he thought were important in his life in addition to teaching and researching things that the school valued and wanted Yoshino to teach the students (34).

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