Saturday, November 21, 2009

Open Forum: Metrosexuality - The Unlikely Ally for Gay Liberation?

"Metrosexual" is a term given for straight men who are very concerned with their appearance and maintain stereotypes generally associated with gay men. This 21st century man cares about his look, feel, and scent and will go to extremes to make sure he meets his own standards. This can include grooming such as facials, pedicures, manicures, waxing, as well as high end fashion and cologne. Some men do it for themselves, because they just like to pamper themselves and others feel it will attract women.

The gay community has a varied stance on the subject matter. On one hand metrosexuals are being accused of appropriating from gay culture, on the other hand gays feel like they can't stand out and know who is one of them anymore. The possible upside to metrosexuality is that these stereotypes are falling wayside and there is no such thing as a "gay look" anymore. If so many people look "gay" or are perceived to be regardless of their actual sexual orientation, than real gay people who enjoy pampering themselves and who may be effeminate are no longer outcasts but just another large segment of the male population.

Also, in responding consider the impact on lesbian and bisexual women, as well as implications for the transgender community. While the term metrosexual really has traditionally applied to "straight men who act gay" there are many straight women who cut their hair short, act rugged and are blurring the lines between heterosexual women and stereotypical lesbian attributes.

What do you think? Yay or nay to metrosexuality, and what is the impact for queer culture?

10 comments:

The BOGO Queen said...

I support any efforts to make ambiguous the otherwise binary gender typing that goes on in this country. Gender expression is a spectrum, as is sexual identity.

So long as "metrosexual" men (and women) are not also homophobes, I think ambiguity is a valid form of self-presentation and can be a path to being a straight ally.

Queers United said...

I agree bogo the funny thing is I have found some of the queerest straight people (metrosexuals) self identified or not, to be very accepting of these attributes while also being very homophobic and transphobic. I wonder if they are indeed anti-queer or feel the need to put on that image so nobody suspects they are gay themselves.

libhom said...

QU: Lots of people are heterosexist and transphobic in order to try to convince people they are not queer. I don't see that as particular to metrosexuals.

Amy K. said...

People can be whoever the heck the want to be, and nobody has a right to dictate who a person is, and how a person lives their lives. They wouldn't want it done to them, right? So my answer is "yay." Freedom has to be across the board for it to work at all.

Anonymous said...

As Quentin Crisp said, "Ultimately, tolerance is the product of BOREDOM". This metrosexuality sounds like the beginning of Boredom to me...

tI believe the larger issue here is just that!

What does it matter, as long as everyone has an equal opportunity to live a rich and fulfilling life?

Vince said...

It's super yay. I often drop wishes to get a wax, buy nail polish etc cos I feel scared of the looks. But with metrosexuality, the women at the wax parlour don't laugh behind the counter anymor

Queers United said...

libhom it's true that lots of people are homophobic and transphobic in order to assure others they are straight but I find that it may be higher among self proclaimed metros.

David Alex Nahmod said...

I'm all for what makes people happy!

Anonymous said...

I can understand. Some of my bisexual friends know at -BiMinge . com- also love to do so.I bet straight will also do so.

Anonymous said...

yeah but metrosexuals are more often than not confused as being gay, and might feel the need to really defending the truth to our detrement.

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