damned_colonial: The lamp outside 221B Baker St (221b)
[personal profile] damned_colonial posting in [community profile] queering_holmes
Over on [community profile] podficmeta they did something for 3W4DW that I think might work well here. One of the moderators, [personal profile] zvi, posted asking people to suggest things they'd like to have discussed on the community. So, I'm going to do the same, lifting most of the phrasing from her post ;)

Please comment to this post if there's a discussion you'd like to see happen on this community. If you have a full fledged entry, you can tell me that you'd like to do the posting. If you just have an idea you'd be okay with me riffing on, say that and I will.

I'll then post top-level posts prompting discussion on the subjects suggested.

Date: 2010-05-12 07:00 am (UTC)
marshtide: (Default)
From: [personal profile] marshtide
Kind of following on from the general stuff about queer womanhood that's being discussed at the moment, I'd love some more specific discussion of Irene Adler as a possible bisexual character. I'll just leave this here and run off again to try and work through my thoughts on the topic a bit more thoroughly.

Date: 2010-05-14 06:33 am (UTC)
ilthit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ilthit
Or genderqueer, perhaps? Adventurous and wearing men's clothes doesn't necessarily indicate lesbian or bisexual, though there might be a link via lesbian subculture, and historical female crossdressers who may have partly inspired the character, such as La Maupin and allegedly George Sand, were bisexual.

Date: 2010-05-14 06:42 am (UTC)
marshtide: (Default)
From: [personal profile] marshtide
Sure, & I'm all for genderqueer interpretations as well, but I do think bisexuality is a valid possibility. This is basically a problem common to a great many actual historical figures, though - that one really can't distinguish between identities which are more to do with gender and identities which are more to do with sexuality in a great many cases. ETA: and of course it can be both.
Edited (inability to form complete thoughts) Date: 2010-05-14 06:43 am (UTC)

Date: 2010-05-14 07:13 am (UTC)
marshtide: (Default)
From: [personal profile] marshtide
Oh, yeah, that'd be good. I sort of tend to think of sexologists' ideas as applied to queer women really got going a bit later, with people like Ellis, though I guess Ulrichs et al really were talking about both to a certain extent - it just gets more attention as applied to men. (Which then takes us into the tangled realm of the invisibility of female queerness...)

Date: 2010-05-14 07:41 am (UTC)
ilthit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ilthit
Well, bisexuality's a possibility, I was just saying there's little real indication of it; we don't see Irene interacting with any other females, so it would have to be inferred from literary inspirations and/or cultural signifiers. It'd be interesting to see the case properly put, though; it's been a while since I read that story and I'd have to do more reading about 19th century lesbianism (all I know comes from Victorian and 18th century porn, the idea of romantic friendships, biographies of crossdressing women and some anecdotes about the lack of legislation, and it's all sort of jumbled together in my head). Irene does cross the gender line quite gleefully, though, and it would be interesting to think about how that might compare to modern genderqueer identities.

Now my mind's going off on a tangent about women's rights movement and caricatures of the activists and that naughty "bifurcated girls" magazine cover I saw in The History of Girly Magazines. This is why I'm bad at academic discussions. All connections and no conclusions.
Edited (A confusing typo!) Date: 2010-05-14 07:41 am (UTC)

Date: 2010-05-14 07:59 am (UTC)
ilthit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ilthit
:D Don't worry, I didn't take it that way!

Is it okay to make that post even though I have no conclusions to offer? I'd just like to see someone else put it all together!

Date: 2010-05-14 08:08 am (UTC)
marshtide: (Default)
From: [personal profile] marshtide
Oh, please do. It's more about getting discussion going than having conclusions right off the bat, surely. :)

Date: 2010-05-14 08:07 am (UTC)
marshtide: (Default)
From: [personal profile] marshtide
That's how quite a lot of things about identity have to be interpreted in this sort of context, though. Which isn't to say I'm necessarily right, for whatever value of, but this does come back to the invisibility of this stuff in general, I think.

We really should take this to a top-level post, though. [personal profile] damned_colonial is correct. Oops. ;;

Oh, well, sounds like a pretty interesting tangent, anyhow. :D

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