On subversivism

This has been crossposted to A Trivial Knot.

“Subversivism”, according to Julia Serano, is

the practice of extolling certain gender and sexual expressions and identities simply because they are unconventional or nonconforming. In the parlance of subversivism, these atypical genders and sexualities are “good” because they “transgress” or “subvert” oppressive binary gender norms.

Serano criticizes subversivism because it creates a double-standard, where people who are perceived as having less transgressive experiences are excluded or othered.

Subversivism was established in Serano’s book, Whipping Girl, and further discussed in Excluded. Although, I admit that I have not read these books, and have instead gotten the short version from Serano’s blog. I refer to subversivism often enough that it seems useful to write up my own thinking about it, and discuss its applications to my own area of activism.

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Linkspam: January 10th, 2020

On Fridays, we will share links to news, blogs, and anything else we find interesting.  We can’t catch everything, so you are invited to self-promote in the comments!

Ace Blogging

Coyote talked about the fixation on attraction as the defining property for identities.

Lib explained why they are an inclusionist.

Community Activity

ACE AF is a short film by Bridget K. Brule about two asexual twenty-somethings.

The Winter 2020 edition of AVENues has been released, on the topic of “The Other Side”.

News & Outreach

A new asexual stand-up comedy show will be touring the UK beginning in March.

Aro blogging

The roundup for the December Carnival of Aros, themed on “Love”, was posted on The Notes Which Do Not Fit.  The January Carnival of Aros, themed on “New”, is now open for submissions.

Calls for Participants/Support

AZE is calling for submissions to Vol. 3, Issue 4: Redefining Relationships.

AVENues is looking for submissions for their April/May/June issue on “Platonic Relationships”

The St. Louis, Missouri ace community is looking for volunteers to help support an ace booth at Pride this summer.

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In which I get married

Part 1: In which I have a cough

I graduated a couple years ago. I wrote a dissertation about time-resolved experiments on high-temperature superconductors. I am done with physics. I am switching careers.

Throughout my PhD, I suffered from long-lived coughs. I’d catch a mild cold, get over it, but continue coughing for two months. It got worse over the years and eventually I would just have a permanent cough, if not for medication. I have asthma, and I maintain my health with a combination of fluticasone furoate and vilanterol. It’s a few hundred bucks a month, billed to my insurance company.

Now I’m going to have to explain this, because it might seem wacky to our readers outside the US. In the US, we don’t have universal healthcare coverage, because I guess that interfere’s with Republicans’ civil liberties or something. Health insurance is attached to one’s job, which allows us complete freedom to choose our healthcare plan by, uh, finding a different job.

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Posted in Articles, greyromanticism, personal experience, Relationships | 5 Comments

Carnival of Aces: Literature, Academia, and Storytelling

The Carnival of Aces for December has been posted on Aria’s Hollow.  The theme was “Literature, Academia, and Storytelling”.  Please take a look!

The next Carnival of Aces is being hosted by Ace and Aro Acts.  The theme for January is “Conscious and Unconscious Difference”.  Get your submissions in before the end of the month!

The Carnival of Aces is hosted by volunteers each month.  If you would like to volunteer, please see the masterpost for instructions.  The next available slot is next month, February.

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Reminder: You could write for The Asexual Agenda!

Now that 2020 has begun, I would like to remind everybody that The Asexual Agenda is always open to new contributors.  Although I was the only active writer for most of 2019, we’re intended to be a group blog, we just haven’t acquired new writers lately.

Why should you write for us?  The Asexual Agenda has built up a lot of clout, and we can guarantee that your voice will be heard, and thoughtfully considered.  And since we have so few contributors right now, I am happy to offer help and guidance in writing what you want to write about.  This is a great opportunity, within reach of anyone who is willing to put in the effort.

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Question of the Month: December 31st, 2019.

Do you have a New Year’s Resolution? If so, what is it? 

Usually I don’t do New Year’s resolutions, but in December I started a new intense fitness routine for my mental health and I’ve been loving it. I’m hoping to keep up with my intense workouts well into the new year 🙂 Yoga with Adriene is releasing a new 30 day yoga challenge this January. As one of the commentors said, she is very like Bob Ross and Mr. Rogers in her positive sincerity. I am considering taking the challenge because I need more of that in my life.

What is your new years resolution? Or do you have a new year plan? Is there something you hope to work on this year to further your personal growth? 🙂

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There’s another perspective: Approaches to ace literature

This is a submission to the Carnival of Aces themed on “Literature, Academia, and Storytelling”.

I recently had the pleasure of listening to a couple academic talks about asexuality, at the annual conference held by the National Women’s Study Association. The first, by KJ Cerankowski, discussed an asexual reading of Moonlight; and the second, by Anna Kurowicka, discussed an asexual reading of The Left Hand of Darkness. Of particular interest, Cerankowski discussed a general method for performing asexual readings. They would look for absences in the text, and take note of when “the silence is deafening”.

On that note, you may have noticed an absence in both of these talks. We’re talking about asexual readings, but we’re looking at texts that lack explicitly asexual characters. Where are the academic talks about Bojack Horseman, Let’s Talk About Love, Outer Worlds or any number of works that are frequently highlighted in ace communities?

The subject of explicit asexual characters arose during the Q&A. Someone asked “Do you have any interest in studying narratives with explicitly asexual characters?” “No,” said Cerankowski. Those narratives are relatively obvious, they said. It is illustrative of the gap between ace communities and asexual studies, that a subject of so much contention in ace communities can be dismissed as uninteresting in the Q&A of an academic conference session.

But I sympathize with the academics’ outlook, and find ace community discussions can get too narrow. I’d like to outline many different ways that people have understood ace literature, to expose everyone to alternative viewpoints.

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Posted in Articles, Media, Research | 5 Comments