Why is lesbian feminism even a thing? Why should a woman’s sexuality have anything to do with feminism? This video answers those questions succinctly. I’m not going to challenge lesbian feminism in and of itself. I do take issue with what appears to be its view on heterosexuality. Take a look:
According to poet and essayist Adrienne Rich, one key theme of Lesbian Feminism is the analysis of heterosexuality as an institution. Lesbian Feminists attempt to denaturalize heterosexuality as well as explore its (heterosexuality’s) roots in such institutions as the patriarchy, capitalism, and colonialism. Lesbian Feminism advocates lesbianism as a rational result of the alieantion and dissatisfaction women feel within those heteronormative institutions.
What I hope they mean is that we should not treat heterosexuality as the default sexuality and that all sexualities are natural. I’m not going to say whether or not I agree with that but it sounds better than what I think they really mean…that heterosexuality is a sexuality based on an oppressive system. It’s hypocritical to demand that your orientation is viewed positively while negatively viewing the orientation of other women. It is irrational to view lesbianism as a rational result of alienation and dissatisfaction with heteronormative institutions. Viewing lesbianism as the result of anything gives legitimacy to the belief that homosexuality is a choice. Does one choose to be gay or a lesbian?
Don’t get me wrong, I totally get the dissatisfaction with our heteronormative society. I get that patriarchy is harmful and I do seek to distance myself, my identity from men. I am a womyn after all. As I stated in this post, I understand why some women wish to reject heterosexuality. However, I also reject the notion that heterosexuality should be rejected and I detest the second guessing of women that is found among lesbian feminism. It’s not about what is desirable to men but what is desirable to each woman. For most women, heterosexuality is natural for their lives and they are not wrong.