[Discussion truncated.] I have not found “For the most part, this semantic expansion of identity space has been embraced and celebrated” and “it seems generally accepted that it’s a good thing for people to have lots of different words to talk about ourselves with” to be true. I have encountered (as in run into, not as in people did it to me) quite major amounts of backlash around these things, from ‘why do you need labels anyway’ to all the issues people take with demisexuality to invalidation or policing of non binary identities to mockery etc. Which is all gross, but I really have seen it a lot.)

Meanwhile, semantic expansion of identity space is important and excellent. So. Thank you. --lyricalagony

I haven’t either. There’s a lot of anger from people who don’t consider themselves part of the queer politics social bubble and don’t see any reason for the enormous proliferation in terms. Part of it is certainly coming from regressive, “don’t rock the boat” types. But I’m concerned that the emphasis on popularizing ever more specific words may be yet another way for career activists to look busy and a thing that’s encouraging people to be apolitical and self-absorbed: identity politics taken to the extreme where everyone has a list of labels a mile long and accepts or mistrusts other people primarily based on what they call themselves.

Rolequeerness seems to be clearing the way for actual, concrete changes. I like what Unquietpirate and Maymay are doing with it and I see the use of it. But it’s overtly political in a way that most labels aren’t. It’s embracing the ways that it confronts existing structures. And it feeds into more direct challenges to sexual Business as Usual, in the context of Consent as a Felt Sense. That is, it’s being popularized in a situation where the people exploring it aren’t boasting that their identity is omg, so radical, while in practice fleeing from risk and conflict. That, to me, makes it quite different from most labels.

Tags: discourse consensus reality sexuality changing things
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