Tag Archives: heteronormativity
Contrary to popular misperceptions of fundamentalists, then, [James] Dobson does not see sex as a necessary evil. For Dobson, sexuality is our most primary energy. Whereas in Dare to Discipline, he castigates the “scientific experts” whose theories of child rearing led the nation to lose confidence in its heritage of biblical wisdom… Dobson idealizes and fights to preserve the modern family created by those scientific experts he loves to hate. But the point of his nostalgia was never historical accuracy. The point was discipline.
In large measure… this discipline is about maintaining middle-class status. Historian George Mosse has argued that the emergence of nationalism in the nineteenth century was intimately connected with white middle-class norms regarding respectable sexuality. Dobson cites Joseph Daniel Unwin… who frames the issues as quasi-mathematical law: a civilizations level of cultural attainment is inversely proportional to the openness of its sexual regulations regarding extramarital and premarital sex.
Drawing on Unwin, Dobson identifies sexuality as our deepest truth. It is the heart of personality: “Self-awareness begins with an understanding of our sexual identity… Everything we do is influenced by our gender assignment.” […] Whereas Freud presented the discipline that civilization exacts as a source of discontent, Dobson presents this discipline as true contentment. For the mechanism by which society effects sexual discipline (according to Dobson) is private property: having a mate, a family, and a home of one’s own.
Ann Burlein, Lift High the Cross, p.155-156
Originally I intended to post this list as part of a larger post. For now, I’ve decided to post the list alone. Got a hunch it might be useful to link at some point.
Below, an incomplete list of certain kinds of search terms that have appeared on my stats page since 2014. Expect some callous ones.
Too often, non-aces will speculate about what it’s like to be ace under the gaze of one of the most politically powerful religious groups to date, making assumptions about what we do or don’t face, without asking those of us who have the relevant experience. This zine, “Aces in the Church,” was created to be a compilation of ace experiences with & within Christianity, to bring our stories together into one place and close the door on any need for speculation.
Been disappointed to see more joining onto the “-phobia” bandwagon with (spreading?) use of “aphobia” and “acephobia,” trading on an equivalency between a phobia and an evil ideology. Really not keen on that. Instead of saying “aphobic” or “acephobic,” it’s easy enough to just say anti-ace.
If you need a noun, there are lots of nouns that can be applicable. Anti-ace prejudice, anti-ace bigotry, anti-ace harassment, anti-ace vilification, anti-ace abuse, anti-ace violence.
For hetero-focused things, you can specify anti-ace heteronormativity.
There’s also compulsory sexuality and sex-normativity as decent terms.
And I’m not sure why “acemisogyny” isn’t already a thing.
Lots of options! Lots of ways to get at the idea of ace-targeting wrongness and harm without resorting to “-phobia.” I know it’s just to follow an established pattern — and my beef is with the entire pattern, too, but I’m just addressing one of the groups I’m part of here.
Can we please agree to put this one on the shelf?
[cw: Christianity comparison in post; sexually-toned “reparative therapy”-toned psychiatric abuse, misogyny, and anti-sex worker sentiment at link]
Anyway this is the kind of thing I’m talking about when I say the concept of “health” has been used to abuse and control people.
And I should be able to drop a sentence like that and leave it, without anticipating someone seeing it and coming back to me with “It’s good to be healthy though. Don’t shame people for trying to get healthy.” Of course it’s convenient to be healthy. But I should get to be able to say “be wary of how people deploy the concept of ‘good for your health'” without getting inane responses, the same way I should be able to say “be wary of how people deploy the concept of ‘it’s God’s will'” without someone replying, “But some things ARE God’s will and it’s important to follow it.” I mean, I expect even very sheltered Christians to get the idea that some Chritianities are worse than others and do lead people astray, but I swear I don’t know how to get through to some people about healthism, not when it’s as ingrained in my culture as it is, I dare say more than Christianity is. Critiquing healthism is incomprehensible blasphemy. I might as well tell someone “I want to be sick and always getting sicker.” It’s… I don’t know. I worry. I worry about the pervasiveness of a faith that strong.
Here are some quotes for those of you who didn’t click the link.
A quote from user lesbian-lily in the linked comment chain:
I’m too tired to find sources and images and whatever, but this is literally how they used to assess women’s mental health and still is a lot of the time. If women wore baggy clothes, didn’t wear make up, didn’t have perfect hair or rejected femininity in any way it was used as a sign of their mental health, a sign that they were crazy and needed fixing. Women wouldn’t be able to free themselves from institutions until they began to conform to femininity. Associating self care with femininity is kinda really fucked up considering we used to get sectioned purely for not being feminine enough.
A quote from Beauty and Misogyny: Harmful cultural practices in the west screenshot’d by user nineteencigarettes:
Pertschuck’s big worry is that, “The woman who feels unable to meet the demands of a female identity and who grooms and dresses accordingly is indeed likely to be viewed as asexual by those around her” (1985, p.221). The woman may desire precisely such freedom from men’s gaze but Pertschuck will not allow it. He sees the solution for such women who refuse to service male sexuality as “appearance training.”
What’s got me hecked up is that I can’t even be properly horrified at just the passages themselves, because I’m also thinking…
I’m imagining that someone would tell me the use of the word “asexual” here has nothing to do with the modern usage by the ace community, not even a little bit. Which makes about as much sense to me as saying that there’s no anti-butch sentiment in trying to “help” an unfeminine woman engage in more feminine beauty rituals, as long as the reason for that “help” isn’t paired with suspicion that she’s attracted to women. Or as much sense as saying that this “appearance training” to make her sexier (to men) has nothing to do with heteronormativity. Just misogyny. Just misogyny alone. Because those two systems don’t overlap like that and aren’t enmeshed in each other or anything.
I’m so hecked up by the homophobia of saying homophobia doesn’t care about making women attractive to/attracted to/”sexually available” to men. It’s just so patently false, so black is white and red is blue, it springs up in my brain now when I read about this stuff. God, I want to fight someone. But this is down the rabbit hole deep.
me: I’m not straight.
some kid: Sorry, but insisting you’re not straight makes it sound like you’re a straight cis person who desperately wants to appropriate LGBT experiences, a conclusion I reached specifically because you claimed not to be straight, which totally sounds like a thing only a straight person would do.
Apparently asexual aromanticism is the “I can’t believe it’s not butter” of heterosexuality.
Alternatively titled: “Where do asexuals come from?” Part 2.
[content notes: talk of flibanserin junk, the aces/q***r debate, parsing aces by romantic orientation, internalized heteronormativity, and related nonsense]
On the one hand, when you’ve been in the ace community a while (and paid any attention), it’s easy to see what’s wrong with the Flibanserin rep’s statement that “Asexual individuals are not distressed, and therefore would not be a candidate for treatment with Addyi.” But it didn’t occur to me until much later what assumptions like that have to do with some of the assumptions in the aces & q***rness conflict, which has been coming and going in waves for years.