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Rocky Horror, Then and Now and a Little About Slash and Identity Labeling - Mo's Journal
February 2nd, 2008
07:01 pm

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Rocky Horror, Then and Now and a Little About Slash and Identity Labeling

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From:mofic
Date:February 3rd, 2008 03:52 am (UTC)
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Oh, so you're writing HP slash now? Anyway, what you describe is a really common progression. I think part of the misunderstanding between gay people and bisexuals comes from the very common phenomenon of gay men and lesbians identifying as bisexual for a period of time during the coming out process. So if we overgeneralize we look at people with a persistent bisexual identity as only half-way out of the closet. We shouldn't do that.

OTOH, a common misconception from the other side is that if we are sometimes attracted to people of the opposite sex, or have been in love with someone of the opposite sex, then we aren't "really" gay or lesbian, we're bisexual. Or that we only claim the label for political reasons. I'm an old style second wave feminist and do believe that the personal is political, but it's not *just* political. And for many of us it's a very personal thing and a core part of our personal identity.

All analogies are flawed, of course, but race is not a bad analog. There has to be room in our society for people of mixed parentage who identify as biracial (like Tiger Woods) and people who identify as black (like Obama). As you say it's a social construct, but that doesn't make it less real.

Similarly, a lot of us identify as gay or lesbian even if we have mixed pasts or somewhat mixed attraction because it's a central feature of who we are and how we relate sexually. Just because someone *could* have sex with a person of either gender doesn't mean they want to or that it has the same quality of centrality to who they are if they do. And generally that is a feeling that develops over time, sometimes with a stop on the way station of bisexuality.

Here's how my X2 Scott explains it to Logan, after Jean's "death"

"Okay. Here's an example: I love giving head. And some of that is just being totally turned on by men's bodies. There's little that feels as good to me as a big, hard cock in my mouth, down my throat." I sneaked a sidelong glance at him, checking to see that he wasn't getting upset with the graphic description, but he looked interested and listening. "It's more than that, though,” I went on. "I have this really intense impression every time I do it. I find myself thinking 'I know what this feels like; I know what he's feeling.' And there's an erotic charge and a connection in that knowledge that I just don't think I could have with a woman."

"Well, that's true. I can see that there's something there with a man that there isn't with women," he said, not seeming disturbed by the conversation at all. "But there's something else with women that you can’t get with a man. Some mystery or something. I don't know how to say it. Do you know what I'm talking about?"

"Yes and no. I do know that, for many men, that sense of 'otherness' about women is profoundly erotic. It doesn't matter that you don't know how to express it, Logan," I added with a smile. "I've heard it enough. Much of Western literature is devoted to expressing just that." I shook my head. "I understand it, in a way. I can teach it, I can write about it, but I don't feel it. It doesn't touch me the way it does you, or most men." I sighed and continued. "I've thought a lot about this, since Jean was...lost. I loved her so much, but not having her I've thought more about what kind of love it was, what kind of feelings I've had. I did think sometimes that I would change, when Jean and I were together, but I don't think it now. We loved each other and that was no small thing. But sex, even with some guy I didn't know, didn't care about, wouldn't see again, was always more intense, more fulfilling, more... complete than it was with Jean." I smiled wryly at Logan. "So, I really am gay."


Edited at 2008-02-03 03:53 am (UTC)
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From:mofic
Date:February 3rd, 2008 01:43 pm (UTC)
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I knew you were writing Hermione/Cedric. I just didn't realize you were doing Harry/Cedric as well.

Tell me, were you struck by Cedric in the book, or just after the movie was made? I *loved* your short first person piece after his death, with his father narrating. I thought it really captured something about love and grief and beautifully fleshed out a minor character. But I can't quite wrap my head around the idea of writing a whole novel about Cedric, much less two!
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From:mofic
Date:February 4th, 2008 12:06 am (UTC)
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Obviously, I'm basing Cedric on the book, but in many ways, he's really an original character.


At first I was really annoyed that Cyclops has so little air time in the movie, but I came to feel grateful for it, because it gave me more room to make him mine. Maybe that's true of Cedric for you, too.

I am very curious about how you have him survive!
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From:mofic
Date:February 4th, 2008 07:38 pm (UTC)
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What's the Harry/Cedric one called? I'm interested in reading it.
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