Stories about: gender

Pleasure moved from his genitals and expanded further throughout his body. He was surprised about the amount of sensation he was feeling erotically. He felt his body had been awoken. He had never experienced erotic sensations anywhere other than his genitals before and bodywork opened his mind up. Days later, he reports that, after masturbating, he …

I will confess that when I transitioned, I struggled to come to terms with my burgeoning privileges. Growing up as an awkward, gangly, heavyset girl in the 90s, I was aware of my place as ‘other’. At primary school I gravitated towards friends who were the odd-ones out. At high school the rift between myself …

When the average American girl turns 18, she typically does one of a few things to celebrate: smoke, binge-drink, or maybe hang out with older men. The day I turned 18, however, I was skipping school to meet a submissive with my pockets full of partially-eaten Snickers minis, birthday money from my grandma, and a …

Growing up in the Church in Queensland in the 80s, no one ever mentioned oral sex. It was always penis in vagina. Pastors only wanted to discuss intercourse in their fire and brimstone sermons. But when I think about my own carnal life, the deep, wet truth of oral sex is what stands out. My …

Ever since I was very young, I noticed that the feelings I was having about my identity, my body and my gender, were not being echoed by the wider culture. For years, I have turned over ideas in my head, like: if gender is socially constructed, why does it feel so starkly relevant and present? Why …

Queer, brown and mentally ill

I had my first depressive episode when I was 17. Every day, I would walk through a busy intersection frequented by cars, buses and beast-like trucks on my way to school. For three months, I could not shake the thought of walking right in front of them. As a queer person of colour, disentangling the …

I am worried about attending my first International Women’s Day march. What will the public on the train think of me? My hat is emblazoned with a scribbled slogan that reads “feminism without trans women is not feminism.” Looking back, I shouldn’t have even worried about stares from TERFS on the train, because there was …

Most people are surprised when I tell them I do pole. There is nothing edgy about me. I don’t dye my hair, don’t have fake lashes, tattoos or piercings. I don’t even wear makeup and I hate G-strings. You’ll never see me in skintight clothes, short skirts or see-through tops. This is perhaps what people …

If a cat lands on its feet and toast always lands buttered-side down, sticky taping the toast (buttered-face-up) to a cat’s back and shoving the two off a counter would no doubt create confusion. The two could not exist in tandem without causing a cosmic rip in our universe’s pants. My pants and universe have …

This is the third instalment of a four-part series on the state of queer young adult fiction in Australia. Read part one, and part two. The We Need Diverse Books movement has done a lot to highlight the need for greater representation of marginalised people and communities in young adult (YA) books. But with the …

Justin Shoulder and Bhenji Ra are two irreplaceable icons of Sydney’s queer scene. They collaborate on projects such as Ex-Nilalang, a genderfluid folklore-inspired video series, and Club Ate, a QTPOC performance arts club space. Sharing a Filipinx-Australian identity, they are performing new work at Asia-Pacific Triennial Performing Arts (Asia TOPA 2017) in Melbourne. Angela Serrano talks …

I spend the most time with myself, running my fingers over my stomach and agonising over the parts that are soft. I guess all queer and trans people feel the way I feel at some point, because our bodies become associated with a very specific type of failure. In Vito Russo’s The Celluloid Closet, he …

This is the first instalment of a four part series on the state of queer young adult fiction in Australia. I grew up in libraries. My mother was a librarian, so any time I wasn’t at school I was at the library. I’d pore over the shelves, set up camp in the corner behind of …

As a child, I remember thinking about getting married. In my mind, I always pictured a woman by my side. I was socially conditioned to think this way from an early age because I never felt like I had any role models outside of the traditional representation of what it meant to be a man …

I recall blowing out four candles on my birthday cake and wishing that I’d wake up the next day as a girl. I can remember making that same wish with five candles, with six, with 16 and even with 32. There’s a lot that held me back from transition earlier in life – shame, guilt, …

Baby, You Are My Religion: Women, Gay Bars and Theology Before Stonewall (2013) by Marie Cartier explores the crucial community spaces built by lesbians in America in the mid 20th Century. The title was lifted from one of the author’s ex-lovers: “In 1995, I was dating a butch woman who at one point said to me, …

Growing up, I was called mukhanath, or hermaphrodite, not because my class mates were certain that I had both a penis and a vagina, but because I was colored outside of the masculinity circle. They chose to assign me both organs because I didn’t have a rough voice, I wasn’t loud or violent, I liked …

Member of poetry duo Darkmatter, Alok Vaid-Menon, chats to us about performance, faggotry and being freakishly queer. This is an excerpt from Archer Magazine #7, the THEY/THEIRS issue. Q: How has your trip to Australia been so far? Politically and racially, everyone has a different idea of what’s going on here. US frameworks around race, …

Alex Lahey is a singer-songwriter from Melbourne, Australia who is having a pretty fantastic year. From winning the $7,500 Josh Pyke Partnership and playing on the stages of Splendour in the Grass festival to the release of a seriously successful debut EP, Lahey is getting a lot of love from the music industry. I meet …

Remembrance day always elicits mixed reactions from me, mostly because I vividly remember having red poppies pinned to my shirt in primary school every 11th of November. I remember standing around a monument, while politicians placed wreathes on the steps, celebrating the same wars and soldiers that displaced my own people from Afghanistan. Veterans in …

It had taken my boss three weeks to comment on my new look. I was glad she liked my shoes, because although I’d only owned office-appropriate heels for a few weeks, I’d dreamed of wearing them for more than 20 years. This is me now. Rewind a couple of years, and this personal unveiling would have seemed like …

“I don’t mind confusion about my gender, but I do resent cisgender people who make that confusion my problem.” – Bani Amor “At this point, the precise title is less important to me than the fact that I don’t fit into the binary.” – Mariana Podesta-Diverio In this groundbreaking edition of Archer Magazine, we curate …

Sexuality - Gender - Identity