Friday, 4 March 2011

Too Controversial

The convenors of the Second Annual Five College Queer Sexuality & Gender Conference at Hampshire College, MA have cancelled a panel on one subject as "too controversial".
This conference is not just about the topics and issues addressed in this space. As organizers, students, and members of various communities, we are witnesses to the beauty of understanding and learning through listening to each-others’ personal experiences. Learn not only to expand your individual consciousness, but also learn in order to better appreciate those around you.
We hope that at this conference you may experience affinity and be presented with new ideas and questions. Each person here has come from a different position than the next, and is traveling to a different place as they continue to evolve. Let this not stall us but help us to realize that we can only get stronger if we learn to move together with our differences in hand.
But some differences are just too extreme, even for them.

According to the Program, suitably non-controversial issues include:
  • How do you talk about consent within a BDSM scene? How can partners negotiate and discuss limits? How do you use a safeword when you're also using a ball gag?
  • At Fuckin' (A), we believe that radical sex positivity is a crucial step towards the revolution -- and when we include rad sex in our politics, we'll have a lot of fun working to get there!
  • Poor? Need "plausible deniability" about your toy-bag? Too embarrassed to go into a sextoy shop? Just a cheapskate? Learn about the wonderful assortment of fun, kinky toys which anyone can acquire without embarrassment in the form of everyday household objects.
  • In this workshop, we will explore consent within queer and kinky scenarios. We'll develop a framework together about what consent is, why it's important, and ways that it can be shared between people. We'll focus on making consent fun, sexy, badass, and tailored to scenarios that may include BDSM, roleplay, fetishes, polyamory, power-play, pain-play, and many more.
So what could possibly be too controversial in such a conference?
Shocked that Hampshire College has abruptly cancelled the Intersexed Panel because it's "too controversial." So...we don't get to talk about babies being surgically altered against their will at birth and forced to live as the wrong gender....
IS Community Elder Vicki Boisseau was told today, outta the blue...ON a THURSDAY, that the Saturday workshop has been cancelled. Wow.
And so Intersexed people are rendered invisible again. We do not get to share our narratives. Others do not get to understand and learn through listening to our personal experiences. Because our mere existence is too upsetting - we're beyond R18+, we're Refused Classification.


Jamie said...

This makes me so angry, and I am very sad that it doesn't at all even surprise me anymore.

Penny said...

That's really very disappointing. The way a child is born is controversial. I just fail to understand people sometimes.

Jennie Kermode said...

This makes me want to spraypaint large pictures of non-normative genitalia all over their walls.

CatherineCC said...

That is some epic bullshit and needs to be called out publicly.

DIY Health said...
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