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Popular Topics in Social Sciences
Africa: Sub-Saharan, Pre-Independence
With reports from hundreds of sub-Saharan African locales of male-male sexual relations and from about fifty of female-female sexual relations, it is clear that same-sex sexual relations existed in traditional African societies, though varying in forms and in the degree of public acceptance
 
Stonewall Riots Stonewall Riots
The confrontations between police and demonstrators at the Stonewall Inn in New York City the weekend of June 27-29, 1969 mark the beginning of the modern glbtq movement for equal rights.
 
Native Americans
A social role for individuals who crossed or mixed male and female characteristics was one of the most widely distributed institutions of native North America.
 
The Sexual Revolution, 1960-1980 The Sexual Revolution, 1960-1980
The sexual revolution of post-World War II America changed sexual and gender roles profoundly.
 
Mixed-Orientation Marriages
Mixed-orientation marriages--those in which one partner is straight and the other is gay or lesbian--often end in divorce, but such an ending is not inevitable.
 
Leather Culture
"Leather" is a blanket term for a large array of sexual preferences, identities, relationship structures, and social organizations loosely tied together by the thread of what is conventionally understood as sadomasochistic sex.
 
Transgender Activism
Since the late nineteenth century, transgendered people have advocated legal and social reforms that would ameliorate the kinds of oppression and discrimination they suffer.
 
Gay Liberation Front
Formed soon after the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the short-lived but influential Gay Liberation Front brought a new militancy to the movement that became known as gay liberation.
 
Topics In the News
 
Celebrating Bisexuality
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 09/23/11
Last updated on: 09/23/11
 
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Wendy Curry, former president of BiNet USA. Image used with the permission of Wendy Curry (CC BY-SA 3.0).

Celebrate Bisexuality Day has been observed on September 23 every year since 1999. The holiday, which is sponsored by BiNet USA, is intended to recognize and celebrate bisexuality, bisexual history, and the bisexual community.

The holiday is often celebrated on university campuses and other venues through events such as lectures, teach-ins, poetry readings, panels, and dances.

Wendy Curry, former president of BiNet USA, was one of the originators of the celebration, which was conceived to counter the marginalization that bisexuals feel within both the straight and the gay and lesbian communities, particularly the tendency to label individuals as either heterosexual or homosexual as though those categories exhausted the range of sexual possibilities and orientations.

Bisexuals are marginalized both by biphobia, which denotes prejudice and intolerance directed toward bisexuals, and by bisexual erasure, which is the tendency to ignore, remove, or falsify evidence of bisexuality in historical records, academic materials, the news media, and other primary sources.

Biphobia is apparent in negative stereotypes of bisexuals as confused, insecure, and unable to commit. Bisexuals are sometimes accused of being promiscuous or suffering from internalized homophobia or accused of denying their homosexuality so that they can partake of heterosexual privilege.

In its most extreme form, bisexual erasure asserts that bisexuality and bisexuals do not really exist. More commonly, bisexuality and bisexuals are erased by the assumption that people who claim to be bisexual are really closeted homosexuals or in transition toward acceptance of their homosexuality.

Bisexual erasure also occurs when cultural and historical figures, such as writers and artists and politicians, who have had extensive sexual experience with both sexes are nevertheless referred to as gay or lesbian rather than bisexual.

Within glbtq activist circles, bisexual erasure is sometimes manifested when bisexuals are not accorded equal status in the movement for equal rights, perhaps on the assumption that bisexuals partake of the heterosexual privilege denied to gay, lesbian, and transgender people.

On September 23, we all need to honor bisexuals in history and in our own lives and join in the fight against biphobia and bisexual erasure.

 
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