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Specificity of labeling sexuality

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Cool essay from makezine.org titled "more gender more of the time" or possibly "specificity is the spice of life," by dean spade.

I don't entirely agree with everything there, and I know some of y'all won't either. But there's a lot of food for thought packed into a short essay.

At first I thought that the piece was taking the common stance that it's best to avoid labeling sexuality altogether, a stance that I usually argue against by noting that if we don't label ourselves, others will label us. But then along came my favorite bit:

Please don't understand me to be promoting 'non-labeling.' What I love is specific, detailed, stimulating, inventive uses of language to constantly re-inscribe and re-identify body and sex experiences, rather than simplistic terms that shut down conversations about how hot we all really are.

Again I'm not sure I entirely agree with that from a philosophical standpoint, but it made me smile.

2 Comments

ys. more labels, not fewer labels.

although there is the "so, what do you mean by saying you're X" problem. (for example, there is the quick pseudolecture that i give that is along the lines of "when i say i am bisexual i mean that i am attracted to at least three possibly more genders of people, yes, bi means two and i just said three, please bite me".)


Bisexuals, trisexuals, homo sapiens, carcinogens, hallucinogens, men, Pee Wee Herman!


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