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December 24, 2008

Homosexual Taboo and Gender

Today, I have mostly been reading Gender Trouble by Judith Butler.  What a good little queer theorist I am.  Anyhoo, I came across an idea which lead to my mind wandering, so I wanted to air those thoughts.  I don't expect to write this entry in one sitting as at the moment I'm in no good state to write coherently, but I wanted to jot down my thoughts while they're still fresh in my mind.

Butler suggests (after some other thinkers who I can't quite remember and my book is on the other side of my room and I'm far to comfortable in bed to get up and get it, but I think they were Freud, Lacan and Irigaray) that gender(/identities?) arise out of the incest taboo, which presupposes a taboo on homosexuality. Ignoring the obvious problem that if it is gender as a structure that arises out of something which presupposes a taboo on homosexuality which in turn presupposes genders such that there can be same-gender attraction, what happens to gender and gender identity under these schema as the homosexuality taboo destabilises (and as an aside which I don't really care about, what happens to the incest taboo?).

If gender requires the homosexuality taboo, then how will increasing societal acceptance of homosexuality (demonstrable through institutions such as gay marriage/civil partnerships, gay adoption and an increasing gay presence in celebrity) affect gender?  Indeed, in trends such as "metrosexuality"is this weakening of the taboo already beginning to blur gender lines.

...I should have to think before i type. I'll come back to this and approach it more rigorously.  Promise.

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