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#queer theory

Metronormativity’s six analytic axes:

  1. Narratological: metronormativity often appears as a travel narrative that demands a predetermined flight to the city; a mythological plot that imagines urbanized queer identity as a one-way trip to sexual freedom, to communal visibility, and to a gay village (or at least a studio apartment) whose streets are paved with rainbow pride. This narrative usually takes the form of a bildungsroman to imagine queers as young adults or adults-in-the-making, this depriving queer children growing up in an identifiable city of a recognizable identity. It also presents non-urbanized areas as hinterlands best viewed from the window seat of your plane. This is not to imply, however, that migrations great or small, individual or collective, enforced or self-initiated, have not been essential to queers of various races and ethnicities across sexual history, or that any queer migration is inherently circumspect, or that flights aren’t often dictated by socioeconomic demands.
  2. Racial: On the one hand…the racial logistics of metronormativity frequently traffic in what José Esteban Muñoz terms a “normative ideal” of whiteness…On the other hand, [there is] the unfounded assumption that urbanized areas are more racially diverse and racially inclusive than ruralized ones.
  3. Socioeconomic: Not simply the gas tank for that flight or the down payment for the brownstone thereafter. Rather, a cross-gender, cross-racial per diem…that enables prosperous queers to announce, to feel, to mold, and to capitalize on their leisure oriented urbanism as bourgeois privilege and as niche market.their padded wallets fashion what anthropologist Eric Michaels…deemed “a Dewar’s Profile image of the gay capitalist” that stifles “critical, political sensibility.”
  4. Temporal: …The hierarchized assumption that a metropolitan-identified queer will always be more dynamic, more cutting-edge, more progressive, and more forward-looking than a rural-identified queer, who will always be more static, more backward, and more culturally backwater.
  5. Epistemological: …The hierachized assumption that the closer proximity you have to a skyscraper, the more in-the-know, in-the-loop, and up-to-the-minute you must be…
  6. Aesthetic: …functions primarily as a psychic, material, and affective mesh of stylistics informed by a knowingness that polices and validates what counts for any queer production; a sophistication that demarcates worldliness, refinement, and whatever may count as “the latest;” a fashionability that establishes what counts as the most up-to-date forms of apparel, accessory, and design; and a cosmopolitanism that discriminates anybody or any cultural object that does not take urbanity as it’s point of origin, it’s point of departure, or it’s point of arrival.

Taken from the Introduction to Another Country: Queer Anti-Urbanism by Scott Herring

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I’m a lesbian with a heart of gold.

If the answer matters to you, please refer to Contrapoint’s youtube video “Shame”. Her words perfectly conveys my own experience, minus being transgender.

That being said, I think your ask is a good opportunity to have an important conversation here:

The concept of the Gold Star lesbian shouldn’t exist, and for one simple reason: only lesbians with enough love and support around them can claim that title. At the basis of it all, a Gold Star lesbian is a woman who has the privilege of living in an environment where she is neither expected nor forced to have sex with a man. Too many women are pressured into being with men, if only by being shamed into it. Too many women are taken without their consent. Being a Gold Star Lesbian is just another way of saying “I grew up safe enough not to bother with men”.

Let me add to that this question: what is a man? A person with a penis? Is a lesbian who has sex with a person who has a penis not a gold star lesbian anymore? And what about lesbians who enjoys sex with a strap-on? Is penetration on the list of no-no also? The concept of Gold Star lesbian doesn’t stand as much as it once did, because it refers to a harsh binary of the sexes. Therefore, it erases non-binary/trans identities from the conversation. I love women, and that love includes non-binary/trans women, with or without a penis.

If the question refers to strictly cishet men, then again, Contrapoint’s video.

Joking around about being or not a Gold Star Lesbian with people we trust, or even on the Internet with other lesbians and queer people, that’s one thing. It’s funny. We know we’re in it together. Being asked out of the blue by an anonymous person on the Internet? Of course you might very well be a lesbian/queer yourself, but the question is intrusive, as well as a stark reminder that I did not grow up in environment where I could naturally grow and love myself as a lesbian. And that makes me sad, because I could have been a proud lesbian for a little over a decade now if I had. Better late than never, isn’t it?

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I’ve got two big, cartoon-related analyses in the works:

• One deconstructing the sexist undertones in the Asterix franchise using gay bards (1)

• and one about how Oswald The Lucky Rabbit is being used as emotional leverage by the Disney Company in order to manipulate young people into endless consumerism. (2)


Which one should I cover first? Comment 1 or 2.

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In the nineteenth century, the first glimmering of the modern gay rights movement cropped up among writers who theorized the existence of the Uranian or Urning—a third-gender person assigned male at birth who housed a feminine spirit. English author Edward Carpenter suggested that music was the form of expression most closely allied with the Uranian—that is, that music might be the gayest art possible. “As to music, this is certainly the art which in its subtlety and tenderness—and perhaps in a certain inclination to indulge in emotion—lies nearest to the Urning nature,“ he wrote.

Sasha Geffen, Glitter Up the Dark: How Pop Music Broke the Binary

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Is musical theatre really a queer art form? In the new episode of Dreamsounds, I take a look at the development of musicals and how their relationship with the LGBTQ community influenced Disney music. My dear husband John McDermott (professor of set design at Adelphi University) also makes an appearance to give insight about the history of theatre!!

Here’s “Why Many Disney Songs Sound So Queer”🌈🌈

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trans women are essential tae womanhood as an existance.. we emobdy femaleness in a semiotic sociaty.. we ha’e existed since long ago an’ will continue tae exist as that which makes womanhood possible.. according to a subidealistic paradign, transmisogyny is whit seeks tae break down womanhood.. in order tae break down womanhood, its upholders, trans girls, must be broken down.. in daeing that, the cisheteropatriarchal white supremacist motifs come tae the forefront ay the colonialistic posthegemony, ushering in fascism an’ despair..

in some ways ye can say trans women are whit keep sociaty safe.. we are its protectors.. we are sociaty’s bullwark against fascism.. sociaty takes us fer granted.. we get genocided in an attempt tae launch fascism throughout the world.. we are sacrificial, but we can protect sociaty without being genocided..

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Style as an alternative idea to beauty … style is a way of cultivating a personal aesthetic that you have complete control over … style is an individual aesthetic, unlike the collective aesthetic of beauty standards. As Wordsworth said of artistic appreciation “… every author, as far as he is great and at the same time original, has had the task of creating the taste by which he is to be enjoyed”. So even if you don’t conform to conventional beauty standards, through the power of original style, you can create the taste by which your unique beauty is to be appreciated. Society may frown upon us six foot trannies, but if I know I’m dressed well and my make-up is snatched, I can easily abide any comment, any stare … I can strut with confidence because I am basking in the regal knowledge of my own aesthetic superiority.

Contrapoints, On Beauty, May 2019

-William Wordsworth, Essay Supplementary to Preface (1815)

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A fun look into a moment in queer history and queer philosophies and protests in the 90′s. 

“Queer Theory was, and is, queer people writing theory about themselves.”

 In order to participate in ‘The Discourse’ people were often expected to act in a very serious, rational way. But Lesbians were stereotyped as shrill, emotional man-haters, so no matter how serious they acted, it was a game they were never going to win, so [The Lesbian Avengers] said: 

“Fuck your standards of respectability! Public Discourse is horny now!” 

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Sometimes I start learning about a new idea in Queer Theory and I can’t focus on anything else I just have to pursue the train of thought 

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yes i feel the same way! i don’t read a ton of theory by virtue of i do not have the time but here are a few things i read awhile back for a research paper I did that I can recommend!

- Girls Will Be Boys by Laura Horak
this is a fantastic book detailing the history of female crossdressing in film around the the beginning of film history, goes into both the trans and lesbian implications in these films. very well written and not dry at all like these books can tend to be!

- the celluloid closet by vito russo
this is the obvious one, basically the 101 of queer film studies. i don’t recommend the documentary, it’s really a lot more basic than I’d like, but i feel like for a pretty comprehensive look at gay representation and issues in film it’s a great place to start, even tho it’s somewhat outdated.

- screened out by richard barrios
i didn’t read ALL of this but the bits that I read were good! delves more into the behind the scenes of code-era cinema. if you’re more interested in that aspect i’d suggest “Open Secret” by David Ehrenstein which is more of a gossipy type look at gay actors. 

that’s just what i can think of tho there is plenty more out there!! just a recommendation as well if you’re looking into queer film studies a lot of these books are harder to find so I highly suggest looking into your local library system, because even if they don’t have it, they probably have an interlibrary loan system that can ship it to your library from a college library. also if you are in college definitely check their resources because usually colleges also have ILL connections with other colleges. though of course that’s not happening right now because of COVID! unfortunately a lot of this stuff is either hidden behind academia paywalls or etc but there IS a way to get to it. 

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We can locate this jouissance in the historic moments of queer riot: Compton’s cafeteria, Dewey’s, the White Night, Stonewall, and countless other moments where queer bodies participated in rupture – throwing bricks, setting fires, smashing windows, rejoicing in the streets. But more to the point, jouissance is located in precisely the aspects of these moments (and of others unknown to us) which elude historians, the ones which cannot be captured in a textbook or situated neatly within narratives of progress for queer people, or of rational political struggle for a better future. Jouissance is the rage which boils over in the first queen to set a fire; the hatred of an entire social order which flows through one’s veins while they set a dozen San Francisco police vehicles on fire. It is the ecstatic bliss that must have shivered it’s way through the spines of any blessed enough to hear the siren songs of those police cruisers wailing in flames. Jouissance is the way that the sexual encounters immediately following such riots were totally incommensurable to the mundane sex of daily life.

“The Anti-Social Turn” from Bædan: Journal of Queer Nihilism

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i am a “reviewer” i spend my days passing through thoughts, feelings, ideas, plans, and opinions, sometimes even facts, reviewing them again and again. constantly changing and tweaking myself to become better. my mind, and my heart, are muscles that must be exercised and practiced. each day i gain new insight into the person id like to become, which requires me to review my outlook on the world constantly so that i can become more open, more loving, and more me

- a thought i had while reading Queer: A Graphic History by Meg-John Barker and Julia Scheele this morning

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