Category Archive: identity

Ghosts of friendships past: On divesting from privilege

A straight person I was once very close with contacted me recently, telling me how fondly he remembers our past and that he missed me. It drew a smile to my face and got me thinking about the friendships with straight and/or white people that have faded from my life. These people have occasionally appeared …

Queers and #metoo: discussing sexual assault in queer spaces

Content warning: this article contains discussion of sexual assault, queerphobia and transphobia, and violence Living in this world as a queer person can be exhausting at times. The incessant and ever-present narratives of heteronormativity are everywhere. On billboards, movies, and even on fucking packets of chips. While this is frustrating, we usually build queer spaces …

Not like you: On gay assimilation and fighting for difference

Kids know. They really do. Long before the adults do. The stares, the pointing, the laughing, the mocking and jeering starts from your first class. Some primal part of the brain is triggered by the presence of something other, even if they cannot articulate what their own tribe is. It is something taught, something ingrained …

Archer Asks: Fashion Designer Clarence Chai

  Clarence Chai is a gay Singapore-born Australian fashion designer and vintage clothing dealer. Prominent in Melbourne and Sydney in the 1970’s and ‘80’s, he was the only Chinese designer in Melbourne for a time. Some of his garments are housed in the National Gallery of Victoria and the Powerhouse Museum Sydney. His fashion label …

Pride parade disruptions: Keeping queerness ethical

Having been brought up on a steady diet of the gay and lesbian section of Blockbuster Newtown, I can say that my movie taste is pretty low grade. In light of this, I can be forgiven for loving the new film Riot, which was released in time for this year’s Mardi Gras and dramatizes the …

Raising a rainbow family: slowly becoming visible

“Sisters?” asks the dishevelled guy in the sweltering hot elevator. My girlfriend has gold flecked blue eyes, straight blonde hair and a small round tummy—she’s five months pregnant. I’m half a foot taller with wavy auburn hair, deep set eyes and a larger frame. We’re both sweating as we look at each other, then at …

Archer Asks: Allan Clarke and the First Nations history of Mardi Gras

Allan Clarke is a Muruwuri man and an investigative journalist with the ABC. He has previously reported for BuzzFeed, NITV and SBS. The Mardi Gras magazine recently published his article about the First Nations history of Mardi Gras, commemorating 40 years of black queer protest and celebration.   How important is the Sydney Mardi Gras …

“Writing had been my vice all along”: Louis’ Story

This story was first published on Staying Negative, a website that aims to emotionally engage and inspire gay/bisexual men, including trans men, through the sharing of personal stories. Read more about how you can share your story here. Content note: this story discusses mental health and suicide.   I was born and raised in Melbourne. Even before …

Hair and identity: Developing a femme aesthetic of queer diaspora

When I was 17, I cut off all my hair for the first time. I was freshly out of high school, freshly queer, and thrilled by the promise of finding queer community at university. I remember nervously holding my own gaze in the mirror as a hairdresser, with a magenta undercut and pierced septum, asked …

Boi wonder: Hinduism, transness and masculine anger

My very first images of masculinity and femininity came from the pictures that hung in my family’s prayer area, inside a small hallway closet with doors that opened like an accordion. Inside I saw gods and goddesses, either balanced on one leg in a dance pose, or standing with their palms together in prayer. At six …

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