July 25, 2011

To be a Woman-Manly

Oh hey there gender blenders,

Have you ever read Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own? Well, I found this little gem:
"It is fatal to be a man or woman pure and simple; one must be woman-manly or man-womanly. ... Some marriage of opposites has to be consummated."
Nice eh? There's even consummating going on--that always makes things more... exciting. Genders are sexing each other up! Okay, so I'm being a little literal, but it sort of works with the movement toward gender-effing, and it just extends Woolf's argument toward physical androgyny in addition to an androgynous persona. These two aspects of androgyny--the androgynous body and the androgynous soul/mind/persona--are essentially what I intend to discuss in this here mcbloggy.

Let's start from the beginning, shall we?

Uh oh... It's definition time!

Androgyny is a so-called contradictory or indistinguishable presentation of socially constructed gender "differences" expressed in behavior or appearance. More simply, we're talking gender ambiguity. Think Annie Lennox, David Bowie, and the Pat character from "Saturday Night Live."

You guys remember Pat right?

See? It's ambiguous! And I bet you are desperately curious. Don't be ashamed. We're probably of the sort who tries to be enlightened beyond caring about gender identifications, and in some ways we are. Just because it doesn't matter to us in theory doesn't mean we aren't festering a little in our guilty curiosity. Let's just be up front about it--we kinda sorta want to know which part of the gray area we are looking at. Because, let's face it, gray areas make us feel a little funny... in the pants... ahem. It has something to do with that gender consummating stuff--Virginia Woolf knows all about it.

What about this whole femme thing? Come on my lovelies, don't you know I want to talk about female androgyny? My love affair with girls breaking gender norms started when I started reading young adult feminist fantasy books as a preteen (ex. Tanith Lee and Tamora Pierce). And I just never got over it, I am in love.

What got you interested in androgyny? What do you want to see me talk about?

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