Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Things We Don’t Understand and Are Definitely Not Going To Talk About

here is a list of things I don't understand and find no one really wants to talk about. As a result of these unspeakable queer moments, I continue to see patterns of problematic and disrespectful relational-behavior within the Toronto feminist and queer community. ( in no way do i maintain a victimized role in this - some of these complaints are unfortunate situations i am very much implicated in )

>> The politics and dynamics of queer relationality and the tensions that arise while sharing space, sexual partners, friends, creative and activist values adds to my rising anxiety regarding inclusion/ex-clusion and the problem with faux queer friends and queer cool cred

>> The building of hierarchies - including violence, oppression, and queer cool (this is a big one that manifests a currency of animosity and makes me deeply sad and conflicted )

>> cheating queers and the hate and hostility that breeds from broken hearts and failed relationships

>> the lack of inclusive and respectful community dynamics in regards to harmoniously bridging various queer circles contributes to an exclusionary ( or even tribalistic ) tension that seems to be unspeakable within so-called progressive community circles. As a result there is a pervasive disrespect socially perpetuated by queers in the creative-feminist-activist-anti-oppressive circles.

* this list is open for debate/under construction as this conversation develops further.

my goal for this summer is to make a queer community building manifesto. Something my friends and i can refer ourselves to when we're feeling these social tensions. Hopefully it could raise our awareness and even help break patterns of oppressive community behavior.

so I'm calling on all my friends, lovers and haters for solutions and suggestions. Post Pride, i think its important to reflect upon these social tensions within our current relationships. How inclusive does Toronto's queer community feel to you? how do you feel post pride? How does relational dynamics impact your celebration of sexuality? Do you feel like your community provides you with safe spaces? Lets break this down... how does our sexuality, relationships and activist realities affect our sense of belonging?
* these are pretty broad but somewhat obvious questions - inclusivity within queer communities is not a homogeneous experience but in fact really varied. I'm more so concerned with the ways spaces, celebrations and relationships between queers fracture our sense of belonging.

photo credit:
Miranda July Film Still


  1. ok thats MOSTLY in TORONTO cause there's something in the water.. people are immature here and take longer to grow up and act like babies. its true.. go to the states or another city you'll see your city has a problem unlike any other city..

  2. this is an awesome list, with which i agree 100%. i really hope the above commenter is right. i have a sneaking suspicion that this is definitely a toronto problem. there are so many hierarchies and it frustrates me to no end. i didn't go to pride this year because i honestly didn't feel like dealing with all the judgment, clique-yness, and i feel so alienated all the time that i just give up in general. how fatalistic.

    we need to make a zine about all this shit. no joke. i'd be in.

    -caitlin (g-h)