URLF Project: PromotingQueerLiteracy

What does it mean to be Gay

Gayness for many people is an entry into understanding queerness, so much so that it has grown to be, itself, an umbrella term for the queer community. Gay in the traditional sense is a label for men who love other men. Fundamentally, though gayness represents a rejection, by men, of societal expectations of power and control in favor of love. Traditionally men carry an expectation of performance of gender roles and as such are more severely punished for expressing femininity than women are for expressing masculinity. Gay men actively defy this expectation in their culture with events such as drag shows which allow people, predominantly gay men, the space to challenge gender roles, as well as establishing their own social gathering spaces which allowed them the space to interact out of the public eye.
The gay community also faced some of the most difficult trials such as the AIDS epidemic when millions of gay men died while most of society refused to care. They have been subjected to countless hate crimes, and targeted government harassment. Today, the gay community represents one of men making space for themselves and being unafraid to live as their complete selves.

Why it's important for Gay men to be visible

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