(Photo from my trip to Russia in 2006)
Queer Russia by By Laurie Essig was one of the books I read when I was doing research for “Secret Agent Moscow.” I love this article she wrote because it sums up some of the conflicting feelings about queer theory between America and Russia.
Particularly, I love her description of how having a preference for food is similar to having a preference for who we love. I am not sure if I believe that we are born into a sexuality. However, I believe that we are born to love just as we are born to eat, sleep, and breath. Who cares if one person likes Chinese food over Italian food the point it that we need to eat food for nourishment. What we eat should make as much difference as who we love regardless of gender. The important thing is that we need to love.
Now Laurie brings up a very good point. She says that the concept of “people are born gay” is probably the best strategy for Russia. I have to agree on that. I agree not because I personally believe “people are born that way.” I agree because it just might be the best strategy to begin to convince people in Russia that when a LGBT person coughs while they are next to them they won’t catch the gay bug. Russians truly believe that being gay is something you catch like an infection.
The conflict is more complex then being LGBT or not. The conflict crosses queer theory and cultural boundaries.
Here is a link to Laurie Essigs book. I highly recommend reading it:
Peace & Love,