Thursday 29 July 2010

Internal politics

A few years ago I came up with this as an illustration of how the lgbt communities are not homogenous. There are more role models, more bars, more social acceptability, more support spaces, hell more money even, the higher up the pyramid you get to be.Which was very useful exploring the idea that Canal Street is not the be-all and end-all of outreach to LGBT at a conference the LGF hosted a couple of years ago.

It probably (subconsciously) derived from a one-dimensional power triangle by Dianne DiMassa in My Gender Workbook, applying the same idea but adding another dimension because of the ways that other factors than gender and sexuality, your wider normativity, slide you up or down the scale of voice, acceptance, representation and respect.

Though I'd have to rummage through my old papers to work out whether I was actually drawing things like this before Gender Workbook came out, I'm really not sure.

The things I've chosen for the slider side here are somewhat arbitrary and I'm sure readers will be able to suggest other things. 

Hard to illustrate is that the bottom row there is more of a wriggling writhing mass of competition.  When I was first coming out some twenty odd years ago I'd have layered things with B above T and Q, but they are at least level now.

Anyway, I thought I'd run it up as a computer graphic and share the image. It might be a good argument-starter 8)


  1. Thank you for your work, I always enjoy reading your posts!

    I just thought I'd drop a line to point out that Kate Bornstein is the authour of My Gender Workbook, although I believe that Dianne DiMassa illustrated it.

  2. Indeed Kate is, but the graphic in question is by DiMassa.