Mainstream framings often equate being LGBTQ+ with being urban, but queer people have always existed in areas of the country considered “rural.” Now, the idealized American value of “rugged individualism” is actively being challenged by diverse queer rural Americans through vibrant community-building.
R&B queen Kehlani’s coming out story encouraged me to reminisce on my own story of coming out and delve into some of the roles Black lesbians have played in popular culture over the years from TV and movies to queer literature.
Naya Rivera’s tragic passing earlier this year has prompted many to look back on her legacy on “Glee.” In the years since its departure from the airwaves, Rivera’s portrayal of Santana Lopez is still making an impact in the lives of lesbian and bi women. As one of the few lesbian TV characters to ultimately have a happy ending, her story was ground-breaking and impactful from start to finish.
The women’s suffrage movement allowed women to re-examine, question, and begin to systematically rebel against the many restrictions they had lived under for centuries—including oppressive gender and sexual norms.
“The findings of this study send a strong message to brands and media outlets that including LGBTQ people in ads, films and TV is good for business and good for the world,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD.
“I try to imagine being with Charlotte Mew on March 24, 1928, the day she killed herself. Let me befriend her. Let me do and say things to ease her pain and save her.
“I’m a lesbian poet from the year 2020, Charlotte, who adores your poems, how they transform your torment into art.
“If I couldn’t save Mew on that day in 1928, perhaps I could save her poems.”
Coming out doesn’t make you at home in the world; nor, certainly, does sex. You need bonds beyond sex: a community, a culture, a shared set of obsessions. “Love on the March,” Alex Ross, The New Yorker 11/12/12 When I was a young lesbian in rural New Jersey in the ‘70s, I was completely lost […]
“I believe in us. I believe in you. I believe in myself. While, I don’t know how, and I don’t know when; I know—just like my ancestors knew—that we will find a way through: as long as we remember who we are and what we are capable of.”
Do we read poems searching for answers? Do we write poems searching for answers? In the case of Naomi Replansky, yes and yes.
“Ask yourself: What does it take to become a really trustworthy person? The honest answer to that will change you. And this cannot be done at the exclusion of getting into the streets. We fooled ourselves into thinking it was one or the other. We must become a revolutionary person.”