IMF: It Gets Better (Pinkwashing Version)

@Athens Biennale [Aug 2013]

As part of the viral campaign It Gets Better (launched in order to discourage young queers from committing suicide), several large corporations and organizations put together their own It Gets Better video in order to show that not only do they care about gay rights, but they actively participate in a kind of gay activism.

The It Gets Better videos of organizations such as the IMF essentially signify the transformation of the gay liberation movement and struggles into supposedly well-integrated parts of Western liberal democracy. A distortion, which amongst other problems, presents homophobia as an issue outside of a Western context (often projecting the problem on immigrants, the poor and those living in distant parts of Africa and the Middle East). Within this new context, described by Jasbir Puar as ‘homonationalism’, crimes of the colonialist and racist West are washed up in the name of an alleged anti-homophobia. At this point, FYTA intervene with cheeky onscreen text, highlighting the ideological (and psychoanalytic) background of what is said.

In 2015, post-colonial theorist Rahul Rao discussed this artwork in his article ‘Global Homocapitalism’ for the journal Radical Philosophy.