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Bisexual erasure is the tendency to ignore, remove, falsify, or reexplain evidence of bisexuality in the historical record, academic materials, the news media, and other primary sources. When bisexual erasure is found in intellectually dishonest or erroneous works, it is a manifestation of biphobia. In its most extreme form, bisexual erasure can include denying that bisexual people actually exist.
In the gay community[edit | edit source]
This can take the form of omitting the word bisexual in the name of an organization or event that serves the whole LGBT community. Homosexual people who engage in bisexual erasure may claim that bisexuals are actually closeted gay people who wish to appear heterosexual. If this were the case it would be homosexual erasure.
It is also common for gay writers and activists to portray bisexual and gender blurring behaviors in ancient and non-Western cultures, such as ancient Greek pederasty or Native American berdaches, as proof that homosexuality has been widely accepted in other times and cultures, although these historical institutions do not match the modern concept of gay sexual orientation.
In some cases, gay commentators in the American media have portrayed individuals caught in scandals involving same-sex affairs, such as Republican Senator Larry Craig or televangelist Ted Haggard, as "repressed homosexuals". Strictly speaking, these individuals were engaged in bisexual lifestyles, since while the behavior was homosexual, both had regular heterosexual partners in addition to same-sex lovers, and did not label themselves as gay or homosexual.
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Hutchins, Loraine (2005). "Sexual Prejudice: The erasure of bisexuals in academia and the media". American Sexuality magazine 3 (4). National Sexuality Resource Center.
- Weiss, Jillian Todd (2004). "GL vs. BT: The Archaeology of Biphobia and Transphobia Within the U.S. Gay and Lesbian Community". Journal of Bisexuality 3 (3/4): 25–55. Haworth Press.
- Yoshino, Kenji (January 2000). "The Epistemic Contract of Bisexual Erasure". Stanford Law Review 52 (2): 353–461. Stanford Law School. doi: .
Further reading[edit | edit source]
- Fraser, M., Identity Without Selfhood: Simone de Beauvoir and Bisexuality, Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press 1999. p. 124-140.
[edit | edit source]
- Dear Fellow Non-existent Beings: countering current attempts to erase bisexuality
- Bisexual Erasure in literature at glbtq.com.
- Curiouser and curiouser by Mark Simpson
- Bialogue/GLAAD Bisexuality Packet for Mental Health Professionals
- Straight, Gay or Lying? Bisexuality Revisited New York Times, July 5, 2005.
LGBT and Queer studies
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