Category Archive: activism

‘Yes’ one year on: Choosing marriage

The anniversary of the 2017 postal survey returning a ‘Yes’ result commemorates a complicated legacy. Many in our community will celebrate this day as a great moment in the history of gay rights, while for many others it is overshadowed by the bitter experience of those difficult months. Contrary to much of the commentary during …

Making Love and Making Law

Making Love and Making Law

I was born in 1991, the year that Nicholas Toonen, a gay activist from Tasmania, sent a communication to the United Nations Human Rights Committee. He argued that criminalising sex between men in private was a violation of his right to privacy. In that year, homosexual sex was still a criminal activity in Tasmania. Under …

Indigenous queer elders: Stepping up for mob

Now in his 50s, Peter Waples-Crowe is a powerhouse community figure in the Aboriginal LGBT community, managing a career in public health alongside a significant body of visual art that reflects his unique intersections. After catching up over cigarettes outside the State Library of Victoria, and reflecting on the sombre irony of smoking tobacco products …

Intersex variations: Western medicine and the Hippocratic Oath

Depending on when it was you asked my parents about their children, they would tell you they had three girls and three boys or, more lately, two girls and four boys. When I was born one of twins, the attending physician wasn’t sure if I was a boy or a girl. I would later learn …

Queering the map: an archive of queer space

There are places that overflow with queer energy each and every time I pass by them. There’s the park in southern Sydney where I had my first gay kiss. A street in the Melbourne suburb of Coburg North where I wore a dress in public for the first time in my life as a trans …

Trans women in sports: End the discrimination now

Wading into the deep end of the pool as a trans woman athlete has been fraught with problems. I was only three years into my transition when I made the decision to return to sport in 2004. Prior to this, I had been a competitive athlete since my 5th grade of school. All I had …

Gay rape fantasies: What do our kinks say about us?

content warning: this article discusses rape and sexual trauma. I remember trying to work out how he made the typo. “I want to rape your cock with my hole.” How could he make such an error? He wasn’t to know how triggering that statement would be to me, so I bit back angst to calmly …

Identity, mental health and postcolonial trauma

A good friend of mine recently asked me to write a piece on the way that depression has impacted my life for a friend’s blog. Thinking about it, I came to realize that the psychological illnesses I have incurred over the years are situated within the history of postcolonial trauma. My ancestral heritage goes back …

Fat femmes to the front: Pushing back on false representation

Society teaches us the word fat is a negative: something to be gawked at, and to shame each other for. Fat people like me are seen as lazy, judged for eating in public, and ignored by our doctors for serious health issues that aren’t related to our weight. We are told again and again that if …

Sex positivity and the question of sexual experience

Once, while discussing a friend’s sexual experiences and motivations at the pub, he swivelled the conversation into a comparison with my own sex life. When expressing that sex didn’t seem to play as a big a role in my self-image as it did for him and others more widely, he asked, in that case, why …

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Sexuality - Gender - Identity