A handful of recent incidents hints at an ideological struggle over the use of the English word fag(got) and the Spanish word maricón in public discourse. This article examines the discursive and ideological struggle over the terms through the comparison of two cases in which Spanish/English bilingual Latinos in the U. S. use what might be considered homophobic slurs in public discourse in two distinct contexts — an informal, off-record sports-related press conference and a radio talk show political interview. The three main aims of the article are to examine and compare the content and context of the two public apologies, to examine the discursive and ideological struggle over the appropriateness of fag/maricón in public discourse through the evaluation of their use, and to contextualize the two case studies within the research on the construction of homophobia in discourse.

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De Gruyter

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This is an article published by De Gruyter in Multilingua in 2012, available online: