Introduction: “Never Been Kissed” by Rachael (Rookie)
First, some ideas that inspired this workshop:
Why “The Personal is Political”?
“…the feminist claim that the personal is political suggests, in part, that subjective experience is not only structured by existing political arrangements, but effects and structures those arrangements in turn. Feminist theory has sought to understand the way in which systemic or pervasive political and cultural structures are enacted and reproduced through individual acts and practices, and how the analysis of ostensibly personal situations is clarified through situating the issues in a broader and shared cultural context. Indeed, the feminist impulse, and I am sure there is more than one, has often emerged in the recognition that my pain or my silence or my anger or my perception is finally not mine alone, and that it delimits me in a shared cultural situation which in turn enables and empowers me in certain unanticipated ways. The personal is thus implicitly political inasmuch as it is conditioned by shared social structures, but the personal has also been immunized against political challenge to the extent that public/private distinctions endure.”
-Judith Butler, from “Performative Acts and Gender Constitution”
WHEREAS sexual minorities within our own lesbian/gay community have been targeted by the right and subjected to misleading and sensationalized portrayals in the media; and,
WHEREAS in particular lesbians and gay men involved in sadomasochism, cross-generational sex and prostitution, as well as drag queens, transvestites, and transpersons are being used as scapegoats to divide our movement; and
WHEREAS the right is attempting to divide our movement from other communities facing a similar “Moral Majority” attack—people of color, women, workers, the disabled, the young and old, and all other progressive people; and,
WHEREAS sexual lifestyle diversity has strengthened our lesbian and gay community; and,
WHEREAS freedom of sexual expression is essential to a healthy society, while the repression of sexuality is necessary only in an authoritarian society,
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we refuse to be divided by those inside or outside of our movement who condemn our sexual, erotic, and lifestyle differences; and,
FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that we defend all consensual sexual activities and lifestyles which are free from coercion, exploitation, and manipulation.
-from Junel Bellwether and Susie Bright’s “Sexual Freedom Resolution” (1981)
Articles for Group Discussion and Brainstorming Activities:
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