Petition to have Rihanna roll me into a blunt and smoke me
indigenous peoples have been living in the Americas for anywhere between 15000 and 50000 years.
like, this is longer than people have been populating certain regions of Europe, and is longer than white skin has existed as a phenotype.
at which point can we admit that this “debate” over how long Native people have been here, where our ancestors came from, or whatever, is just a bullshit rhetorical exercise that serves only to cast aspersions on indigenous birthright?
"Firstly, the suggestion that one shouldn’t use anachronistic categories is in many ways ridiculous. If you discuss proto-Indo-European, the Roman upper classes, the Carolingian economy, medieval anti-semitism or whether King Alfred had Crohn’s disease, you’re using an anachronistic category, in the sense of a concept that didn’t exist at the historical period under discussion. The question is whether a modern category is actually useful for a discussion of a particular historical period, whether it can be defined in a way that makes sense. I think it may be true that ‘homosexual’ is not a useful category for dealing with the Middle Ages, but that isn’t the main category that Boswell actually used. What Boswell talked about was ‘gays’, and he had a simple definition of them: people with an erotic preference for their own sex. (In CSTH he made this ‘conscious preference’, but later removed the qualifier).”
I think the money quote from this very good post is actually this one:
But such a refusal needs to be handled very carefully, because it’s not symmetric. If you say there are no ‘heterosexuals’ in the Middle Ages, everyone will realise you’re making a particular theoretical point, not talking about actual desires. If you say there are no ‘homosexuals’, it all too easily implies that there were no gays (in Boswell’s sense).
It’s why I’ve taken to framing the issue of same-sex attraction in the middle ages in exactly that way — that the concept of heterosexuality as a category of sexual identity didn’t really exist back then, and that it was considered the invisible default and a type of desire and preference everyone naturally had. While the fact that some people preferred their own sex was certainly recognized — there’s a reference to it in e.g. Marie de France’s Lanval, probably written c. 1170 — it’s probably safest to say that the medieval understanding of sexuality held that same-sex attraction wasn’t something that only happened to those people, that it was theoretically a temptation for anyone (this is for instance the general attitude of Alain of Lille’s Pleint de Nature, a really weird homophobic screed in which a personified Nature complains that Teh Gays are ruining everything, and phrases it in terms of grammar. Rebuttals to this text had a lot of fun with the grammatical aspect of things, since Latin grammar is in fact founded on same-gender attraction). Obviously there are still people who think this way today, but I think it’s getting to be less and less the default, and in general I think people recognize the “if it were legal/accepted, everyone would do it and THEN WHERE WOULD WE BE” type of argument as pretty fringey.
For the most part I think the argument Jaeger makes as cited in the post — that behaviors that look homoerotic to the modern eye might not have had the same connotations in the middle ages — is probably best to keep in mind when we’re talking about individuals. It’s always very difficult to determine conclusively whether someone hundreds of years ago was gay or bisexual, on the grounds that there was a wider range of emotional expressions available between same-sex friends and that explicit references to people having same-sex relationships are invariably meant to be disparaging. But on the other hand one also doesn’t want to give the impression that there weren’t any queer people back then, because of course there were.
Reblogging both for historical homosexuality and for the discussion about the necessity of using modern concepts/categories when dealing with history.
“Woolf often conceives of life this way: as a gift that you’ve been given, which you must hold onto and treasure but never open. Opening it would dispel the atmosphere, ruin the radiance—and the radiance of life is what makes it worth living. It’s hard to say just what holding onto life without looking at it might mean; that’s one of the puzzles of her books. But it has something to do with preserving life’s mystery; with leaving certain things undescribed, unspecified, and unknown; with savoring certain emotions, such as curiosity, surprise, desire, and anticipation. It depends on an intensified sense of life’s preciousness and fragility, and on a Heisenberg-like notion that, when it comes to our most abstract and spiritual intuitions, looking too closely changes what we feel. It has to do, in other words, with a kind of inner privacy, by means of which you shield yourself not just from others’ prying eyes, but from your own. Call it an artist’s sense of privacy.”
Joshua Rothman's New Yorker essay on Virginia Woolf’s idea of privacy is the best thing I’ve read in ages.
It rings especially poignant in the context of her own conflicted inner life, from her exuberant appreciation of the world’s beauty to her intense capacity for love to the deathly despair of her suicide letter.
Do yourself a favor and read Rothman’s full essay here.
i feel like tall people at concerts have everything they want in the world
dont date a boy who puts you up on a pedestal. dont date a boy who treats you like a prize. date a boy who is obsessed with aliens and is in the fbi. date a boy who eats sunflower seeds and throws pencils into the ceiling. thats the boy you deserve.
How about you date whoever makes you happy? Even if they put you on a pedestal.
my mom just screamed at me to “never touch her laundry again” because i took out some items that were apparently slightly damp!! wow!!!