Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Carnival of Aces Round 2: Call for Participation

Welcome to the second edition of A Carnival of Aces! The theme for this month’s post is The intersection between race, ethnicity, culture, or nationality and the asexual identity. I'm sorry for the length of that sentence, but I wanted to make it broad while avoiding confusion. I chose this topic because it has been under-discussed and out of all the topics I was considering, this is the one I've seen the least amount of writing on. Although you may or may not find this topic relevant to you personally, it is open to everyone. All I ask is that if race/ethnicity/culture/nationality is a place where you have privilege, to please be aware of that while writing.

Posts may be submitted for this second round of the carnival until June 1st, at which point the carnival will travel to a new blog and I will create a round-up post full of all the submissions for this month.

Any post dealing with both asexuality and the theme of the carnival is welcome. Alternate forms of media (images, video, poetry, fiction, etc) are also welcome as long as they deal with the theme. If you’re not sure whether your piece is on-topic, submit it anyway and we’ll figure it out. Submissions should be posted as comments here or emailed to me at sanfranciscoemily [at]gmail[dot]com. You can also send me things on Tumblr if you're more comfortable with that; my name there is the-pineapple. If you don’t have a blog but you want to submit a post, I’m glad to host guest posts here; again, please contact me if you want to do that. You can make a guest post anonymously if you would like.

Some background information about this project:

For those who are unfamiliar with them, a blog carnival is an event in which many people write blog posts around a single theme. These posts are then collected at the end of the carnival and linked together by the carnival’s host.

This particular blog carnival is an effort to encourage a variety of different voices to speak about asexuality from their own perspectives. Anyone can participate, but the responses should deal with asexuality or the asexual spectrum (grey-As, demisexuals) in some way. They should also relate in some way to the theme of each round of the carnival, which will change from month to month and will be chosen by the person hosting the carnival for that month.

Thank you all very much!

For much of the text of this post, the credit goes to Sciatrix.


Janet S. said...

Awesome! I was hoping you'd pick this topic!

Ily said...

@Janet: Sweet! I hope there will be a good amount of participation...I'll be in suspense on that for a while, though.

Ace Amoeba said...

Assorted Thoughts for Carnival Month #2

Ahhh Yessshhh! It's Carnivale and time to get down to business. The intersection of asexuality to race, nationality, culture and related categories is the task at hand. There's definitely an intersection in all of these categories and that's the easy part. Trying to explain why these intersections exist, well that's a bit more difficult. After wracking my superior brain I'm going to attempt to do just that to the best of my ability.

Within the community one can find just about every race represented, and why not, we're a diverse group in every possible way. This doesn't change the fact that we're overwhelmingly represented as white as far as race is concerned. I don't feel that this in any way means that a white person is more likely to be asexual than another race, but rather than that is what the community at this point is overwhelmingly comprised as for whatever reason. This is troubling because a person of a non-white race might look at asexuality as a “white thing” and be turned off by this. There are plenty of non-whites that join the community notwithstanding, however I would suggest that there are many that are hesitant to do so because on the face of things we do not appear as diverse a group as we actually are.

Another very obvious intersection is that of genderqueer individuals, those that do not identify of their assigned sex of male or female. Most asexual message boards contain there own section dedicated to gender discussion and there is even an entire message board, TransYada, that is an offshoot of the asexual community, but is not exclusive to asexuals. Plenty of cake though! Is being genderqueer increase the likelihood that a person is asexual. Probably not, though if a person is going to embrace being genderqueer, then it's pretty safe to say they'd be more open to embracing qualities about themselves that go against the grain, such as being asexual. Obviously the majority of asexuals do not consider themselves genderqueer, though a highly concentrated number do just that.

As mentioned earlier, we are a diverse group, with members scattered all over the world. Once again some countries and parts of the world are more represented than others. The USA is pretty well represented, but per capita there are countries that seem to have a much higher concentration. This is primarily, but not limited to, European countries. Asexuality is huge in Germany, also in the UK and most other countries in the EU. One might be inclined to conclude that this is a major contributor to the aforementioned whiteness, but even just looking within the US will yield similar results.

While this one is a little off-topic there seems to be way more females identifying as asexual than their male counterparts, and even then many of the males identify as genderqueer as well. This would lead to the theory that being asexual does not fit in with conventional masculinity, and therefore men would be less likely to embrace this orientation. This is not to say that women aren't expected to be sexual, but with the women's liberation movement there is a bit more flexibility in the area.

Let us not forget that asexuality is in and of itself a subculture. It could even be looked at as a counter-culture to the over-sexualized world we are immersed in. As an orientation, it's always been around. As a subculture/counter-culture it is fairly new, continues to grow and as it does more intersections within race, culture, nationality and even religion will emerge.