SARAH GODSELL

Marie Claire (South Africa) - - REAL LIVES -

‘I’m not against het­ero­sex­ual re­la­tion­ships in any way. I’m against a so­ci­ety that al­lows, ap­plauds and recog­nises only that. I re­fer to “straight” as both a sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion and po­lit­i­cal choice. It’s about recog­nis­ing the struc­tures in so­ci­ety, which priv­i­lege het­ero­sex­ual cou­pling as the only path to “nor­mal” and, per­haps es­pe­cially, “hap­pi­ness”. I iden­tify as bi­sex­ual, and my choos­ing to en­gage in other forms of re­la­tion­ships is also about me try­ing to ex­plore life gov­erned by dif­fer­ent kinds of rules. As a white per­son, wo­ke­ness in­volves an aware­ness of priv­i­lege. I must be aware of the dam­age I do, where I speak and how, and un­der­stand what I can claim and what I can’t. I can choose who to sleep with, fall in love with, marry, have chil­dren with, and be rel­a­tively safe. I am pro­tected from the vi­o­lence di­rected par­tic­u­larly at queer black women in so­ci­ety. That can­not be ig­nored. Cel­e­brat­ing wo­ke­ness can’t hide the bro­ken­ness that ex­ists ev­ery day. Ev­ery­thing hurts more when you’re woke. You see and feel how the world is bro­ken. But it’s also more hope­ful, be­cause you see where the ghts are.’ @sar­itafru­tilla

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