Ghaywan’s film Geeli Pucchi catches you off-guard as you emerge, a little disoriented, from the first two films in this anthology, making it a little difficult to comment on it in isolation, with any amount of objectivity or distance, and it stands out particularly starkly in this otherwise abominable line-up.
Best Friend set me up with Dude 6. We worked in the same field and liked the same things. Dude 6 said looking at me was like looking into a mirror. He can dream, I guess!
So, I turned to an artform, a science, a philosophy to help me understand the language of people who won’t explain themselves to me. Obviously, I turned to astrology. Jokes apart, alongside my aro-ace peers, astrology introduced me to a new language to name different parts of the self.
Thanks to IG Reels, India’s dispersed queer community is able to continue to connect and show love through digital, pink hearts - algorithm be damned. Queers are wearing their hearts - and their full lives - on their screens, using what they feel inside as a medium to express their look (and outlook) on any given day.
Short films are an efficacious medium for filmmakers to present their worldview with a smaller budget and compact storylines. To young filmmakers, they are an opportunity to learn and develop their style. It gives them creative freedom, which is often compromised in commercial films.
The establishment of the Gay Games (also referred to as the ‘Gay Olympics’) in 1982 was a response to decades of marginalisation of the LGBTQ+ community within sports. In an inspiring act of defiance and liberation, athlete Tom Wadell, who was gay himself, came up with the idea of the Gay Olympics that would be held every four years, similar to the modern Olympic Games.
Sulagna had only dated men when she lived in Mumbai. For most of this time, she hardly knew there were other options. But once she met Kshama, things changed.
Sex became the forbidden fruit I couldn’t have - not until I was far away from my parents’ watchful eyes at least - but could only seek pleasure in thinking of. In my head, I imagined a hypersexual alter ego of myself, who would appear the day I moved out and could finally live as their true self. I did move out, I did begin to live the way I wanted to, except that this imaginary persona never revealed herself. She didn’t really exist.
Being cognizant of our intimacy needs and how we are comfortable expressing our intimacy can make our relationships smoother. However, along with our needs, we also have privileges associated with our sexuality. Our needs and privilege are constantly intersecting and providing us with a framework that we are living with. Understanding these can provide us with insights of where we draw our strengths.
Sportspersons with marginalized, non-masculine bodies and behaviours are then subject to scrutiny and disrespect, and are undermined. If I had a paisa for each time I have heard, “Why are you throwing like a girl, da?” from male classmates, my wealth would have rivalled that of Ambani's.
As Nas’ soul ascends towards the sky, the clouds above part to reveal a bright light and an angel. However, Nas chooses to hold onto a pole emerging from below, poledancing through their descent into Hell.
In recent years, queerphobes have dismissed the inclusion of transgender youth in athletics as part of their dismissal of trans rights, and therefore, human rights. Transgender student-athletes are likely to feel motivated to play sports the same way as any other participant, but in many states in the US (as in most parts of the world), they are refused the right to do so or can only do so only after meeting multiple intrusive, medicalized requirements, which further ostracization and exclusion.
If the fatphobia isn't concerning enough, another stereotypical Indian OB-GYN response we picked up from your responses is sex-shaming, or rather ‘penetration-shaming’. If women got a dollar for every time they have been denied sonography, pap smear, HIV/STD screening because they are ‘unmarried’ (codeword for ‘not “broken into” yet, as they clearly have not had sex because… they are unmarried’) – they would have enough to relocate to a country with less judgmental gynaecologists.
It is vital to understand that we all exist on a physiological spectrum - as our bodies needn’t necessarily fit into the sex expectations born out of our assigned sex - and this doesn’t just apply to just intersex people, but instead to all.
A heartfelt tale about a boy trying to understand himself and his place in the world, The Boy in the Cupboard is for everyone who’s ever questioned something they were blindly asked to believe in.
Ash slipped Boon’s shirt off their shoulders and kissed every inch of their skin he could land his lips on. It felt manic, rushed; as if he were afraid Boon would disappear if he stopped touching them, so he fit in as many kisses and touches he could in that moment.
While the social perception of being in a ‘straight’ relationship does give couples and individuals access to certain privileges, the mass media myth of your sexuality being defined in terms of the other- who you love, or desire, or are different from, for example- can make navigating this relationship space tough when you are queer.
After a touch-starved year of physical distancing, a cuddle puddle with a trusty, close group of friends & partners is exactly the kind of meet-up we could all do with.
Despite my inner turmoil and dwindling self-confidence however, for the first time in my life, I fostered valuable female friendships. I learnt that they were struggling with the same difficulties I was dealing with and yet, I couldn't understand why they would consider themselves unattractive.
I will not bat an eye if you walk out wearing makeup one day, or a skirt for that matter. If you would rather wear polo shirts and khaki pants, I still wouldn't flinch. I'll love you no matter what, unconditionally, without an asterisk or expectations.