Most days nothing much happens. When something does, it seems to involve clusters of ‘intellectuals’ engaged in…intellectualling? And sometimes they go on these spiralling loops where the same things keep coming back again and again, as if it were a rehearsal (for me not for them, cause they are new people each time) in which the same old argument reaches the same old conclusion.
I was writing some time back about Strange Obsession. And the book’s still following me, it seems. One of them intellectual people I was talking about was in its (well, her) turn talking about the book and its psychoanalytic whatnots. By which I mean the usual stuff, Freud, a little bit of Lacan from some vague introduction to…, you know the thing. Putting two and two together, she managed to reach the conclusion that Minx suffered from an Electra Complex (makes it sound like the flu. Are there vaccines for the Electra Complex? Maybe not. Even poor Oedipus still happens, they say.) due to which she became a lesbian and therefore obsessive. I huffed and puffed. How, said I, can you make that connection? What are you basing it on?
‘Freud says so,’ I am answered, which to begin with is not an answer (just because Freud said so… etc) and to end with, is not quite true. So I point that out. And here the priceless gem pops in. ‘The newspapers say so.’ To give them some credit, I can think of newspapers which have been pretty open-minded lately. Plus, academically speaking, I don’t see how the newspapers get more credibility than Freud, but never mind. What do the newspapers say? They say homosexuality is abnormal. Well, gee, that must be news, innit… Yours truly takes exception to that and so does yours truly’s ex, sitting there and staring horror-struck, pleading a silent ‘do something.’ So we try. We bring up the old DSM, we bring up the reading down of 377, we even bring up erotic sculpture and ancient literature. What do we get in reply? ‘But in our culture it’s bad.’
That one silences me every time. And it seems with every passing day I’m more ‘silenced’. Is it just me? Do these arguments follow me around? Is there a world out there where they don’t try to give you credit for being one of them ‘normal’ people even as you argue with them ‘normal’ people? How is it (I know, sometimes it’s good and when you need for it to happen it doesn’t) that everyone always assumes that everybody in the room is straight as the straight and narrow path to heaven and they’re only discussing all these ‘diseased’ things out of some form of morbid curiosity?