Detail Jean Béraud’s 1908 painting, The Drinkers

The Unbearable Fairness of Lesbianism

Can we talk about dibs? Like “callin’ dibs” on the window seat, or taking the first shower, or on being the front half of the elephant at the masquerade ball? These are all perfectly normal things that someone might attempt to claim for their own preemptively like say middle schoolers, or office workers vulturing over leftover meeting pizza. Most of us, I’d wager, are very aware that there are lot... »

“Humor as Lube:” On Comedy and Activism

“Humor as Lube:” On Comedy and Activism

Comedian Kristen Becker made a big splash in my hometown of Buffalo, first as the city’s favorite stand-up comedian and then as the general manager of Helium, a major comedy club bringing national talent to the Buffalo. Lately she’s turned her attention to LGBTQ rights activism, especially in her former home state of Louisiana, a major battleground for human rights (state law currently does not pr... »

Coming Out Stories: Holding Hands with the Nonperson I’m Not Dating

Coming Out Stories: Holding Hands with the Nonperson I’m Not Dating

Who among us doesn’t have a complicated relationship with the idea and the act of coming out?  Though the term ‘coming out,’ particularly when associated with the idea of ‘the closet,’ makes it sound like a one-time thing, coming out is really a never ending process.  We stop coming out only when we stop learning about ourselves and we stop meeting new people. First, we have to come out to ourselv... »

Quickies 04/21/2014

Quickies 04/21/2014

NPR has a piece on what it’s like to become a hijra, and India’s new law recognizing them as a third sex. NPR needs to update its style guide on the gendering of transgender people. Alex Kondracke and Angela Robinson are teaming up to produce a TV project about bisexual film legends Greta Garbo and Marlene Dietrich. Watch this great oratory on oppression and homophobia. Reina Gossett, ... »

Transgender Semantics

Transgender Semantics

(Content Note: Discussion of problematic language) A recent episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race ( »

Retort and Riposte: More Grad School Stuff

Retort and Riposte: More Grad School Stuff

So for those of you who missed the earlier exchange Dan and I have been having a bit of a back-and-forth RE: the state of graduate education. I broke the topic with an article on the Duke Collective, a group of students who had resorted to wage sharing to help minimize the perilous funding situations they found themselves in. I argued that the move places a spotlight on the structural problems wit... »

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