Black OR Queer? Life at the Intersection

Snaps all around! Intersectionalities exist, they always have, this is not a new phenomenon. Changing the system, understandably, is difficult, however we as individuals, as communities, can work to change our mindsets in order to promote society as it really is, to have our libraries, books, and so forth reflect reality. Intersectionalities exist and when they’re ignored, woc, qwoc, etc…are forced to check only one box thus erasing everything else. (Also, this is what I’m doing my independent research/possibly thesis on so yay!) -Patrice


Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Fobazi M. Ettarh.

Black people are more homophobic.

Racism is over. LGBTQ rights are the new Civil Rights.

Well at least Black people can get married!

My classmates spit these words at me during the discussion of Civil Rights in young adult literature. I had expressed my discomfort at the conflation of the Civil Rights and LGBTQ movement. These words, while familiar, still stung. As usual, I was the only person of color (POC) in the room. Many studentsandlibrarians have talked about diversifying the MLIS and field of librarianship. But what about the librarians already in the field?

My journey in getting the MLIS has been difficult. As someone who identifies as a queer person of color (QPOC), the overwhelming white heteronormativity of the program here at Rutgers is disheartening. I have been able to build racial and queer themes…

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3 thoughts on “Black OR Queer? Life at the Intersection

  1. “Well at least Black people can get married”???? This is a thing? That someone said? And they seriously did not see the problem with that?

    I have this urge to start banging my head against the wall. And yet…I’ve heard people compare the struggle for LGBTetc. marriage rights to the struggle for interracial marriage. While there are parallels to be drawn there, most of the people who make this comparison say something along the lines of, “Well they didn’t use to allow interracial marriage, but that’s all OK now so why not gay marriage?” It’s the same mentality of acting like now that one issue is “fixed,” we can move on to a new, supposedly unrelated issue (which is often implied to be the more important, relevant issue). I don’t mind the comparison necessarily but the way people use it can be a little, I don’t know…naive? Simplistic?

    • Yeah, I think a lot of things are simplified. I also think, like you said, people feel that we can only have one issue on the table at the time. They’re all things that need to be addressed, one shouldn’t have to trump another, we should see the success of one as related to the other.

      But yeah, I was so surprised that someone actually said that too, haha it’s just so crazy I find it almost hard to believe.

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