Having never been to China, and having only Chinese-American (but not Chinese) friends, I’ve got little knowledge of gay life there besides what I read in the press. So I read things about the Mr. Gay China competition being shut down, but also how a boy who dresses as a girl took the country by storm in a reality singing competition. How Chinese officials opened a gay bar as part of an AIDS education program, which is all supposed to be part of China’s “quiet gay revolution”. And now I’m reading about how lesbians in China might be more “tolerated” by society than gay men because their sexuality is more spirtitual, or whatever, while the idea of two gay men falling in love still carries more Ew Factor?
“The Chinese public look at lesbian relationships as more spiritual,” says Stanley Kwan, the director of an opera about two women in love, who, reports Global Post, “added that he doesn’t think that means an opera about men in love wouldn’t have been allowed. ‘Maybe not a film or TV series, but an opera or stage drama, I hope it would be possible.’”
Adds Beijing-based lesbian activist Eva Lee: “The lesbian story is less offensive to mainstream society. When people see two men in love they only think of them having sex. They don’t treat lesbians seriously because they don’t understand how women can have sex without a man, without a penis.”
Whatever it takes to be
accepted tolerated, I guess.