Dwayne Jones and the Dangers of Tragedy Tourism:
Dwayne Jones was a transgender woman who lived in Jamaica, a country Times dubbed “The Most Homophobic Place on Earth” in 2006, and has since then been the sight of many violent homophobic and transphobic murders and mob killings. When researching her story, it can feel at first like a wide display of the homophobia and transphobia in the country. She dropped out of school because of bullying, and her father kicked her out of the family home at the age of fourteen because of her “effeminate” behaviour. She was then run out of town by the neighborhood, including said father.
Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Pictures Worth a Thousand Words:
Fani-Kayode lived in Nigeria for the first twelve years of his life but was eventually forced to leave because of his father, Chief Babaremilekun Adetokunboh Fani-Kayode, who was a prominent member of the Yoruba family. A civil war in Nigeria put him and his family in danger.
The Complex and Controversial Brenda Fassie:
Brenda Fassie was what many of us would refer to as a “child star.” She knew that she wanted to be a singer from a very young age and she began pursuing that dream as soon as she could. She was in many singing groups before she gained real popularity with her band, Brenda and the Big Dudes. Their song, “The Weekend Special,” sold enough records to seal her fate as one of the most popular musicians in South Africa at the time. To say she only went up from there would be an oversimplification of a very complicated life because while she did continue to garner fame and awards, her personal life was filled with more than her fair share of struggles.
Anderson Bigode Herzer:
Check out our most recent podcast episode about Anderson Bigode Herzer
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Defining Identities in North America, Part 1:
All throughout history, one thing has remained true: everything changes. This universal fact also applies to something so fundamental to humanity as language. From the evolution of definitions to the evolution of the words themselves, we have seen drastic changes to our languages even within the past decade. And while it is hotly debated whether the new additions to our collective vocabularies are beneficial or not, the fact is that the additions exist, whether or not old white men writing think pieces for the New York Times like it. Within the queer community, these changes are particularly evident, with new names for old identities being revealed by the day. For now, though, we focus on one letter of the LGBT community, and the two identities that begin with that: the T. This week, we are releasing a two part series focusing on the transgender, and two spirit community within North America, and the different words and definitions that have existed throughout the history of the continent.
Defining Identities in North America, Part 2
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Brazilian Dictatorship and the Queer Movement:
Queer culture in Brazil is as big and diverse as the country itself. The Pride Parade of São Paulo was considered the biggest in the world by the Guinness Book of World Records in 2006 and received 1 million reais from the São Paulo city hall in 2010. And after many years of struggle, it’s currently legal for same sex couple to marry and adopt children. The public health system can now cover gender confirmation surgery – even if under less than ideal circumstances. But as important as those victories are, there’s still a history of violence in this country that makes many victims to this day. In 2016, Brazil was the country with the highest number of homicides against transgender women in the world, being transgender is still considered a psychiatric issue. Making it necessary for transgender people to have a medical professional’s approval to access hormonal therapy and gender confirmation surgery legally. The discrimination against queer people has deep roots in Brazil and even during times of adversity the Brazilian LGBT community has kept fighting for their
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