Confuse Us...

Indian Gays Try To Make Sense of It All

Being gay in India ain’t easy. As we’ve seen, the former British colony refuses to shed Section 377, the anachronistic law banning homosexuality. Well, the issue came up this weekend over at India’s NDTV, where journo Revati Laul offers readers a little look at India’s lavender set. And it’s lots of confusing…

Among Laul’s subjects, you’ll find a transexual by the name of Sylvie. According to Laul, “[Sylvie] was once gay and then decided to undergo a sex change and completely transform into a woman”. So, does that make Sylvie hetero? We don’t mean to be insensitive, but we can’t keep trans sexuality straight.

Laul goes on to quote UNAIDS consultant Ashok Row Kavi (pictured), who sees the gay rights struggle as more than just a quest for rights. It’s a quest for a multiplicity of social structures:

I would surely like to adopt and I have considered it several times in my last relationship. Doesn’t everyone deserve the right to have a family? Doesn’t everyone deserve the right to be happy?

The gay-lesbian movement has to challenge patriarchy. It has to do a lot of challenges. I call it the cutting edge of new social systems. Because gay men and women are going to evolve new social patterns. Why can’t five different generations of men live under one roof?

Um, we understand what Kavi’s saying, but wouldn’t having five generations of men under one roof still be patriarchal? A man would, after all, be leading. Unless, of course, in this new queer world, there’s no law and order.

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One Comment

  • Mr. B

    Yeah, unless Sylvie took a liking to the ladies after her transition, she’d be considered hetero like most other women who like men. :)

    My queer friends who grew up in India routinely talk about the complexities of introducing alternative family models into the previous establishments. Like most anywhere else where it’s possible, LGBT folks tend to move into the larger cities–especially Bombay and Calcutta–to start their own infrastructures. But then, so do other young folks who want to get a taste of independent living before they marry (or not marry at all).

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