Queering OWS – Radical Language Road Guide
The information and descriptions included in this educational document are loose guidelines for understanding important language and successfully navigating within queer space. Each piece of information included in this document is circumstantial and should be regarded with some degree of fluidity to ensure inclusivity and true understanding.
What does ‘queering’ mean?
To ‘queer’ Occupy Wall Street (OWS) is to shine a light on all aspects of communal living and movement building.
It means ensuring that members of the queer community do not feel invisible, undermined or neglected.
It means introducing new language, new concepts and more inclusive tactics that promote diversity and compassion.
It means honoring and infusing our actions with love, beauty and the collective fierceness of the united queer community.
It means creating a safe-space within the movement for members of the queer community to come together, discuss issues that are important to them and support each other through direct interaction and active support.
It means pointing out acts of transphobia, homophobia and sexism; to take a stand against these oppressive acts through visibility and open condemnation.
It means sharing our history and sharing the tools needed to shift the paradigm, undermine the patriarchy and unravel the heteronormative supremacy that is the root cause of all the problems with this oligarchy.
Asexual – An individual who expresses no sexuality or sexual preference.
Cisgendered – An individuals assigned gender, the gender they were assigned at birth, is in alignment with their personal gender identity.
Gender Binary – The heteronormative division of male and female as the only qualifiable or acceptable gender identities. A gender binary also enforces ‘traditional’ gender roles such as the male provider and the female subservient.
Gender Non-Conforming – An individual who doesn’t qualify or conform to any gender identity.
Gender Pronoun – An individuals personal qualification of their gender identity. There are ‘traditional’ gender binary pronouns such as male pronouns (he, him, his) or female pronouns (she, her, hers). Some examples of gender non-conforming pronouns are they, their, theirs or zie (zee), zer, zers.
Heteronormative – The institutions, ideologies and culture cultivated by a majority. Heteronormativism assumes gender identities, personal pronouns, sexualities and cultural backgrounds based on a cisgendered denial of alternative personhood or radical ideologies.
Homonormative – The institutions, ideologies and culture cultivated by the LGBT communities based on the perceptions and confines of a heteronormative majority.
Intersex – An individual who physically embodies multiple gender expressions.
Queer – Anyone and everyone who doesn’t identify with or align themselves to heteronormative behaviors or culture. This includes but is not limited to individuals who identify as bisexual, gay, gender non-conforming, intersex, lesbian, straight, transsexual, or two spirited.
Transsexual – An individual who does not identify with their assigned gender identity.
- FTM (Female to Male) – An individual who is in transition or has made the transition from their female assigned gender to their actual male gender identity.
- MTF (Male to Female) – An individual who is in transition or has made the transition from their male assigned gender to their actual female gender identity.
- Post-Op – An individual who has undergone sexual reassignment surgery to physically reflect their personal gender identity.
- Pre-Op – An individual who has yet to undergo sexual reassignment surgery to physically reflect their personal gender identity.
- Non-Op – An individual who has not or will not, through personal choice or medical restriction, undergo sexual reassignment surgery to physically reflect their personal gender identity.
Two Spirited – A native American or first-world concept explaining the homosexual, bisexual or transgendered phenomenon as someone being born with two spirits, often male and female, in one physical form.
Sex Positivity – The concept that an individual should be proud of their personal sexuality and gender identity, or lack there of, as a method of positive reinforcement for traditional oppressed or marginalized groups.
Added the preamble: ‘The information and descriptions included in this educational document are loose guidelines for understanding important language and successfully navigating within queer space. Each piece of information included in this document is circumstantial and should be regarded with some degree of fluidity to ensure inclusivity and true understanding.’ – Craig Stephens 10/31