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Posts Tagged ‘queerness’

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Image Source: http://trauma.blog.yorku.ca/2015/12/south-asian-queer-community-lacks-visibility/  (Artist – Jinesh Patel)

(Content and Trigger Warning: Self Harm, Suicide, Substance Abuse, Emotional Abuse, Intimate Partner Violence, Bullying)

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I often find that mental illness and queerness aren’t addressed properly or constructively when talked about together. So often the public at large would have us believe that queerness is a result of mental illness or that mental illness is the result of queerness exclusively. With this in mind, the queer community will often push back on society’s behavior by talking about the two exclusively from each other, frequently ignoring all the ways mental illness intersect. That’s does not go to say that queerness is the result of mental illness or vice versa at all, but rather it shouldn’t be ignored that many people in the queer community go through both because of the way society has constructed and reacted towards queerness. For example, queerness has often been perceived as a deviant thing, it has historically been punished and worked against in a variety of ways. (more…)

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Image Source: http://www.avclub.com/article/theres-mash-rainbow-road-themes-all-8-mario-karts-206528

I’ll focus on my own experience here but I know there are going to be things about my experience that many other queer people can relate to in this regard.

My experience with queerness has never been linear, it has indeed been very queered. It has consistently involved not knowing about a way of being queer and then being introduced to the concept, a moment of reflection and then realizing “oh shit that’s me.” But I’ve also consistently struggled with coming to terms with these new labels and seeing how they fit me.

From the age of 12 to about a month away from turning 21 I had been on a journey of denial, internalization, grief over myself changing and growing, complete secrecy, exploration, etc. etc. about me being bi. I had come out after years of being afraid of myself, but in that time I also developed a yearning for community. When I came back to UMBC after two years of community college I knew that I’d want to seek out my community. Since then my reality as a queer person has shifted so greatly. I feel so liberated. Yet I grieve. I grieve for the ways I have been, not knowing if they are different than who I am now. My sense of self has been questioned. I don’t know if my new state of existing is just blurrier, or if things have just been just out of my sight this entire time and it constantly feels like both. I don’t know how consistent this person who is me is. (more…)

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I haven’t connected to any other class’s readings as I have connected with Eli Clare’s Exile & Pride. I’m trying to figure out why, and I still don’t rightly know, but I needed to share.

It seems obvious to say, “Well, I like the subject matter,” but really. I do. And it is all very different but so intrinsically connected, that I feel bad that I ever doubted the meshing of these worlds into one book. The environment, queerness, and disability (to narrow it down to a main triad) are all sides of the same coin. The environment–the one he have created and the one that has always been–often dictates disability. Disability provokes a queer understanding of identity. Being queer in different environments–rural and urban–is like being a polar bear or a house cat,  a bird or a lost lizard in a sewer. The criticism that Clare invokes when talking about these topics is also critical of race and ethnicity and of privilege and gender. Who was the first to claim land as an inexhaustible resource? Who dictates the gender and sexual norms? Who creates the urban space that perpetuates disability? Clare touches on all of these linked together identities and sites, and it feels so right. I learned so much from Clare’s writing, but I also picked up his sense of criticism; that calm, assertive, compassionate voice that questions why and kicks out with fervor. Clare’s criticism is beatifically formed and so god damn smart, but it’s not the only thing that keeps me in the book.

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