Thursday, May 22, 2008

#20- Is asexuality radical? Interview with KL Periera

A pretty awesome interview with KL Pereira, the reporter for Bitch magazine who recently wrote an article on asexuality. We discuss everything from radical feminism to hot asexuals to gender neutrality.


pretzelboy said...

I personally feel that asexuality should be utterly unradical. As an identity it is problematic because it is centered around something people are not interested in, rather than something they are interested in. So it only makes sense as an identity to the extent that it violates people's expectations.

I feel like the response should be, "oh, you're asexual? that's fine. everybody's different." and that's the end of it. On the other hand, I know that serious consideration of asexuality will require a lot of people to rethink their views on sexuality and even on what it means to be human (i.e. "sexuality is a fundamental part of being human.") So in that way, asexuality is radical. But I feel like it shouldn't be.

willendork said...

I'm looking at pretzelboy's comment and remembering just how much I have yet to take in about the varied nature of the asexual commmunity... because the - (to me inherently) - queer/ radical nature of asexuality is part of what I find so appealing. I seriously need to, say, *bake* a cake for KL Periera because her article in Bitch was my first introduction to the existence of asexuality outside of my own head, and her take on it, as a radical underpinning of the "sex sells" consumer culture, is one of the first things that made me comfortable with (considering) identifying this way. I'd been attempting to take back "prude" - the way that we've been attempting in the LGBT community to take back "dyke" and "queer" and all those terms for ages now - with friends before I knew there *were* asexuality communities, and the "Do Not Want" article helped me articulate the (cultural) power that I do see asexuality as having, which I had struggled to do before. (It also helped me articulate some things about myself, which I am hugely grateful for...)

Anyway, great interview. I loved what she had to say about the pressure from the media to be something you're not, as well as your own comments about the complications around representing a "hot" asexual. (Tricky territory, especially if you want to avoid the risk of sexualizing the asexual image for "distribution" purposes.) And I loved what both of you were saying about figuring out what we can *do* - as individuals and (allied) communities - and then doing it. I'd be on that train in a minute.

Oh, and as a p.s. - I have a new questioning/ asexy blog I've just started posting at... which is how I found you. Mind if I link yours?

Carsonspire said...

I agree with both pretzelboy and willendork. Asexuality in and of itself is inherently unradical; it is an orientation and human characteristic over which we have no control. The way we create discourse around asexuality and the way we bring it into the mainstream (or not) is what we should be considering as "radical".