The popular notion that lesbians desire like men is infuriating: our affections may be directed towards the same subset of the population but we neither experience nor express them in a similar fashion. However, as evident by the movies that I would gravitate towards, my perception of women was unwittingly steeped in the ‘male gaze’.
The 28-minute film dives deep into the lives of five Queer Sikhs living in India. Produced with a budget of 2,000 USD, the money was raised via a crowdfunding campaign that met its goal within 10 days of its launch, said Sukhdeep Singh, the director of the film.
The two are sitting hand in hand, drinking their coffees in bed and reminiscing about the night before. Venkat raises an eyebrow and smiles, reacting to his lover's words. Dhruvika talks speedily, the butterflies in her tummy fluttering all the way up to her throat.
The way I see it, people in these parts of the world, regardless of their gender or sexuality, may find it hard to feel safe as-is. This experience may be magnified for the local queer communities, and remaining closeted may be the norm.
Ravi’s crime: editing and sharing a Fridays for Future ‘toolkit’ Google doc, on understanding the farmers’ protest that has been sweeping and affecting the nation. In other words, it’s a crime to be a politically and civically conscious, young woman in what is somehow unironically and proudly touted as the world’s largest “democracy”.
It was in Class 10 that I thought I found true love. Spoiler alert: It was just another episode of infatuation. I was alone with no one to truly call a friend, feeling out of place in the world, depressed and dysphoric.
She felt a movement to her left and looked up; it’s the stranger she saw almost every other day on this train route. They had gotten up and stood near the door. They both had travelled probably a hundred kilometres together in the last year yet she still did not know their name. There’s a comfort in their presence, though; they had exchanged several smiles and knowing looks when someone said something funny very loudly, even though they had never said a word to each other.
The skin experts say to leave the pimple alone
But I was sure she knew better
The third time she said
I walked around like a leprosy patient
‘With all that on your face’
Heteronormative culture doesn't want anything to do with characters like Carol or Elio, so society doesn't want them on screen for too long before a pair of tits stick up or a death scene shakes up the audience.
While we deserve recognition in the eyes of civil law, we don’t owe anybody the performance of the mainstream narrative. Here’s a list of reasons why.
Personally, I found Benjamin and Felicia to be some of the funniest people I’ve ever spoken to. Their energy is infectious, and their ability to bounce ideas off each other highlights why they work so well together.
Fast forward to now, I have watched most seasons of Selling Sunset, after which I watched the first season of Housewives of Beverly Hills. Bear with me as I express surprise at the barrage of misogyny that they were. Confused as to why we were documenting and consuming these specific people’s lives on-screen, I looked up the early cast of Housewives of Beverly Hills.
Queer love songs, of course, hold a special place within music — security, passion, and happy endings are things that, unfortunately, cannot be taken for granted by queer people. So, here’s a list of queer love songs for the ‘out and proud’ or questioning Desi, to reassure you that everything can and will be okay.
Far from gay pride parades, conventions and heated debates on Twitter, most Indian communities have their own way of dealing with queer individuals. In certain parts, covert honour killings and conversion therapies are organized such that the only way for a young queer to survive is to run away in the cover of the night to a metropolis, many a time with no financial or social support.
The arena of gender neutral fashion is still one in the making - which loosely translates to “It’s niche enough to be expensive.” It is essential to create avenues for affordable, relatively inexpensive pieces whilst maintaining a high standard of quality.
Yet, it was my first time hearing about an intersex person that wasn’t one of the two ‘disorders’ in our Biology textbook. It was my first time seeing the idea of someone having XY chromosomes but presenting physically in line with society’s notion of a cis-woman.
This heteronormative gaze allows the straight account to take the centerstage at all times. Any marginalized narrative—in particular, the stories of and by trans, nonbinary and gender-nonconforming people—remains on the periphery. A queer story’s literary merit, economic viability, readership, and cultural value, are all decided by the barometer of the successes of established ‘straight’ narratives. It is expected to be calibrated as a response to this overculture.
They call him Tae, which is not short for anything else. He is a Lee, the direct descendent of one of the Five Dragons—powerful corporate magnates that have dominated the moon for close to a century.
To me, neuroqueer does not have a fixed definition. It’s not what you are, but what you do. It is how who you are expresses itself (or doesn’t) in your everyday life; it is a verb, rather than a noun or adjective.
Oddly, neither my therapist’s worksheets nor her sessions ever helped me understand my sexuality. It was an elephant in the room, one that I could neither name nor recognize, thanks to unspoken, yet pervasive heteronormativity and misogyny.