The idea of queer theory is focused around breaking down the norms that have been built up around human sexuality. Traditionally, we see sexuality—or sexual identity, through either one of two lens; relating homosexuality and heterosexuality. Over the years, the spectrum of sexuality has grown, leaving these two categories to be seen as misrepresentations of the varied sexual drives that actually exists. This system of partisanship is what the book refers to as heteronormativity– a world view that promotes heterosexuality as the normal sexual orientation. Especially in today’s media, we can see the bias between how heterosexual and homosexual relationships are portrayed differently.
LGBTQ is shorthand, which stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer. his term acts as an inclusive umbrella for a diverse set of sexual and gender identities in the community. Something that I’ve recently noticed is that although the media is becoming slightly more comfortable with introducing LGBTQ representation, there is still a great lack in characters. Even in the event that they do introduce these characters, many shows in entertainment have shown them more likely to be killed off than the straight character. Also, their storylines tend to solely revolve around their sexuality and struggles pertaining to that. When we watch television shows today or ads, they only seem to promote heterosexuality in one way; its either gay or lesbian. They also follow many stereotypes that our culture has produced (i.e.: a gay man is to act as feminine—if not more than, a woman). These can be very harmful because it places limits on all people who fall under this umbrella.
In what ways outside of media have you seen heteronormativity reinforced in everyday life?