Author Archives: Coyote

Problems in the Promotion of Romantic Orientation

While romantic orientation isn’t inherently bad, there have been some recurring problems with how people promote the idea, as demonstrated in the article picked this month for Ace Journal Club. So in the hopes of showing people how to spot these issues, this post pulls some quotes from that article and explains their implications, illustrating the tensions between introducing/endorsing romantic orientation as a conceptual tool (favored by those who use it) vs. leaving space for those of us who find it personally unhelpful.

Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image: Stoplight Silhouette, NYC by Bruce Thomson, licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Continue reading

A Case of Romantic Binarism in Scholarship

This month, the Ace Journal Club read an article in Archives of Sexual Behavior called “Sexuality, Sexual Behavior, and Relationships of Asexual Individuals: Differences Between Aromantic and Romantic Orientation” (2022). There are a lot of things to take issue with about this piece, and you can read the AJC summary for an overview, but in this post, I’m just going to focus on the binary treatment of romance.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image created in Inkscape.]

Continue reading

Quoi Identity Survey: Results

Thank you to everyone who participated in or helped to spread the Quoi Identity Survey. This survey was released on March 6th, 2022 and ran through April 7th. It collected 428 responses in total.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort.]

Continue reading

A Timeline of Anti-Ace Blogging

A compilation examples of, responses to, and discussion about anti-ace blogging and its surrounding context, extending back to the year 2010.

To be clear, this is not a comprehensive masterpost of every anti-ace thing on the internet; this is an attempt to document anti-ace blogging as a specific cultural phenomenon, particularly in its language and its impact on online ace communities. To that end, I have included links which are not anti-ace themselves but are contextually relevant in some way. Things I am interested in here include 1) how anti-ace bloggers have been referred to, 2) how the conversation has been referred to, 3) other recurring terms and phrases, and 4) how the conversation has been remembered. Contributions are welcome to the extent that they contribute to any of those areas.

Be advised, I do not recommend actually trying to read through all these. Instead, I suggest you skip down to the Retrospectives and Discussion sections.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview Image: Ace of Spades by Adam DeClercq, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.]

Continue reading

Quoi Identity Survey

Now announcing the launch of the Quoi Identity Survey.

The purpose of this survey is to investigate the identities, demographics, and community involvement of those who affiliate with the quoiromantic, quoisexual, or quoigender umbrellas. Quoiromanticism is a concept that originated from a disidentification with romantic orientation, due to the specific intracommunity norms of the asexual community. The same principle has since been applied to gender and sexuality. However, you do not need to identify with a specific term in order to participate in this survey. If you are unsure whether you are part of the intended demographic, you are invited to err on the side of yes.

Click here to take the survey. It will remain open until April 7th.

If you can, you are invited to spread the survey link and help collect more responses. Questions can be asked in the comments below (no account required) or via this contact form.

In addition to WordPress, the survey has been shared on Pillowfort, Twitter, Tumblr (here, here, and here), Arocalypse, AVEN, and Reddit (on r/quoiromantic, r/quoisexual, r/quoigender, r/aromantic, and r/voidpunk).

Edit: the results have now been published.


Dear Bi Lesbian Defenders: Stop Throwing Me Under the Bus

If you’re out there arguing against identity policing, that’s great. While you’re at it, try making room for people like me, too.

This post explains how defenders have been lured into an essentialist framework, what the problem is, and how to fix it.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image: Tire Track in Concrete by Darren Hester (GrungeTextures), licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.]

Continue reading

Romantic Orientation Cannot Be “Appropriated”

If you have been involved with identity blogging for a while, you may have encountered the claim that romantic orientation is being “appropriated” or “stolen” from the asexual community. These claims are never accompanied by supporting evidence and have no basis in reality.

That’s all that should need to be said, really, since the burden of proof ought to lie with the people flinging accusations. But for anyone curious, here’s a bit of further background:

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image by Aaron Burden on Unsplash, used according to their license.]

Continue reading

On the Many Slippery Meanings of “Love”

“Love” is a word that has been used in many, many different ways. We may choose to emphasize some meanings over others, reject some entirely, or bring different ones into focus at different times, but at each step of the way, I think it’s important to maintain an awareness that you are making a selection — a choice — out of many possible choices.

Content note: in order to cover a broad range of examples, this post discusses some heavy topics, including conflict with family, religious commentary, and quotes/links/examples including overt racism and attempted suicide. Mostly these are brief and possible to scroll past, but I want to give people a heads up that this post does touch on topics of that nature.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image: Banana Peel by Glenn, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.]

Continue reading

Sexnormativity and the Android in Syfy’s Dark Matter

The last time I talked about asexuality and nonhumanity in fiction, I suggested that we ask, on a case-by-case basis, what role (non)humanity plays in how (a)sexuality is portrayed. When it comes to the television series Dark Matter (2015-2017), the answer to that question is simple: sexuality is framed as part of what it means to be “human.”

[Crossposted to Pillowfort.]

Continue reading

Ace Family Resemblances: Absences & Alienation Beyond Attraction

This month, Sildarmillion selected “beyond attraction” as the theme for the Carnival of Aces. I appreciate this theme because over the past decade or so, the ace community has become saturated with what I have called attraction fixation or attraction-based essentialism. For instance, you can see a lot of this in the AVEN debates over the phrase “little or no” (note, this series is PF login-only). Other examples, while less extreme, still reflect an attempt to isolate one specific feeling or experience that aces don’t have, which I think is inadvisable as well as unnecessary. When people take this kind of approach to asexuality, it generally reflects an ignorance of the history and prior debates on this subject.

Personally, I appreciate the “attraction” framework for describing certain kinds of experiences, but over the years I’ve gotten increasingly disillusioned about centering it in definitions of asexuality or gray-asexuality. Not only does that approach contribute to identity policing, but it also leaves a lot out of the picture, including what I consider to be more salient to my own identity as ace.

[Crossposted to Pillowfort. Preview image: 1800 Series by Weijie, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.]

Continue reading