Here’s what I consider to be the 101 curriculum:
- Robyn Ochs
- Bi Any Other Name by Hutchins & Ka’ahumanu
- Sexual Fluidity by Lisa Diamond
- The BRC and its history (including: Way Beyond the Binary)
- Eponymous Fliponymous
- Bisexuality does not reinforce the gender binary & Bisexuality and Binaries Revisited by Julia Serano
- And we added some additions/recommendations —
- Bisexual Manifesto (1990)
- Bisexual Index: What is Bisexuality?
- What is bisexuality? Definitions from several leading bisexual organizations.
- Words, binary and biphobia, or: why “bi” is binary but “FTM” is not by Shiri Eisner
Words have a community and history. If you’re going to wrestle with their meaning, you need to be aware of the community and history behind those meanings.
New York City: Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, veterans of the Stonewall Rebellion and founders of STAR (Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries), march in the 1973 Pride Parade.
Aww … once upon a time in NYC … “Ah, but I was so much older then/I’m younger than that now”
Back in the day (that day being 1842 ) the German doctor Richard von Krafft-Ebing wrote this famous book Psychopathia Sexualis: eine Klinisch-Forensische Studie (pub 1886)
This book discussed heterosexuality, homosexuality and something else - something the doctor used a term from botany to describe. “Bisexuality”. Bisexual flowers contain androecium and gynoecium and are called androgynous or hermaphroditic. Examples of plants with bisexual flowers include the lily, the rose and most plants with large showy flowers.
Krafft-Ebing held the view that bisexual people were mentally androgynous/intersex, that their brains contained more than one gender. Bisexuals were considered to be androgynous/intersex like Hermaphroditus, their patron demi-god/ess from Greek mythology.
And that we have our own demi-god/ess! Who is genderqueer! Bisexual smash the gender binary and monosexism. Hermaphroditus rules yo!
Concerned? We are too! As Jen Yockney wrote in Bi Community News:
In 2010, I went to two events to mark LGBT History Month. Both of them left me thinking, ‘this is not my history’.
One was an event that promised to talk about bisexuality, but the presentation skipped most of the last 25 years worth of bisexual community activism. When I asked a question that referenced Bi Community News – one of the longest running bi projects in the country [ed note Great Brittan], after all – it got blank looks from the speaker.
So many theorists, activists, events, publications, erased from the record presented. And knowing that for other attendees, if I didn’t challenge what was being said, then it was likely they’d go away taking the history presented as fair and true.
In complete bewilderment we have watched the wholesale attempt to rewrite and redefine all of modern bisexual history to make us disappear. A trend that really started picking up steam in late 2005/early 2006 and it seems continues unabated.
One of the latest stunts being buzzed about in the Bisexual Community? A re-editing this past July 2012 of the meaning of the familiar rose lavender and blue gradient (the bisexual pride colours) that has been used since the 1970’s in the familiar “Bi-Angles” symbol and then later was adopted into the Bi Pride Flag. As was calmly noted someone changed the meaning specificially so as to give, “more detail on non-binary erasure in the flag”.
Why? What is the point? What is being gained by this? And by who?
In 1971 Petty Officer Robert A. Martin Jr. became the first US Servicemember to publicly fight his discharge for being a LGBTQ person. Said journalist Randy Shilts in his 1993 book Conduct Unbecoming: Gays and Lesbians in the US Military,
In the tens of thousands of hearings since World War II where comparable actions had been taken on the basis of comparable evidence, the matter ended there, with the sailor skulking away in disgrace. Petty Officer Martin, however, went public with what had happened to him and swore to fight for an honorable discharge
Despite the support, he received a general discharge in 1972, but he continued to fight and in 1977 his discharge was upgraded to “honorable”. wrote historian David Eisenbach in his 2006 book Gay Power: An American Revolution,
Martin’s groundbreaking public battle against the Navy kicked off a series of well-publicized challenges to military discharges that harnessed and directed the energy of the gay rights movement in the 1970s.
Despite the words gay, gay , gay being endless thrown about Petty Officer Martin, (who is better known by his nom de guerre Stephen Donaldson and his pen name Donny the Punk) is a famous and important bisexual activist.
Though he did die just short of his 50th birthday (yes from AIDS, in many ways he completely epitomized the “sex and drugs and rock-and-roll” lifestyle of his era with all it’s excesses, pitfalls and it’s joyousness) he had an amazingly full life and quite the wild ride. In 1966 he founded the first LGBTQ Student Group, he was an active member in the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) & Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) the groups that sprang to life immediately the day after the Stonewall Riots and most famously in 1972 he helped draft the Quaker Committee of Friends “Ithaca Statement on Bisexuality”, perhaps the earliest public expression of a new bisexual consciousness.
There’s that, and the fact that the Stonewall Rebellion, when we all fought back against police brutality, happened in June.(via mikelo)
A militant activist who helped plan and participated in LGBT rights actions for over three decades, Howard was an active member of the Gay Liberation Front, the Lavender Menace and for several years chair of the Gay Activists Alliance’s Speakers Bureau in the post-Stonewall era.
She is known as the “Mother of Pride”, for her work in coordinating a rally and then the “Christopher Street Liberation Day March” to commemorate the first anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. Howard also originated the idea for a week-long series of events around Pride Day which became the genesis of the annual LGBT Pride celebrations that are now held around the world every June. Additionally, Howard is credited by Dr. Wayne R Dynes in his ‘Homolexis’ along with fellow LGBTQ+ Activists including bisexual activist Stephen Donaldson and gay activist L. Craig Schoonmaker who is credited with first using the phrase with popularizing the word “Pride” to describe these festivities.(via bisexual-community)
reblogging with all the extra included information made necessary by those snidely superior sorts who are obviously unable to FOLLOW A LINK and READ SIMPLE DECLARATIVE SENTENCES. *smh*
Known for her haunting self-portraits and an existence marked by tragedy and political action, Kahlo was not passive or traditionally beautiful. She was la más chingona of the women of her time (and of ours). Openly bisexual, she had no qualms about declaring her opinion … Still, over a hundred years after her birth, she remains an omnipresent cultural representation of fortitude in the midst of adversity, fearlessness of the unknown, sexual liberation, and opposition to conformity.
I often wonder if Kahlo was aware of the trail she was blazing, or if she somehow possessed a furtive knowledge of the mark she would leave for the generations to follow … she was the consummate example of a queer feminist icon, and we would be remiss to discuss Frida Kahlo without noting the undeniable effect she has had on the feminist and LGBTQ communities. Not only was she a sexually liberated woman who proudly and openly declared a love for women and an appreciation for the power of transgressing gender norms, she was unafraid of being seen as different.
Unwittingly, she defined what it means to be queer and simultaneously validates the sense of community associated with it.