Saturday, 28 July 2012

446: Lesbian Femininity Control

Private Eye, 29 September 1967
Bill Tidy

Private Eye, 5 November 1982
Marc Boxer

The counterapart to the sissy, effete male athlete is the mannish sportswoman, which is equally threatening to conservative gender assumptions. How easy to undermine a woman’s accomplishments in a man’s arena by insinuating that she’s a lesbian. That’s one of the reasons why I generally try to avoid comic portrayals of lesbians. They’re generally a lot more limited than humorous portrayals of gay men – dykes in male drag, threatening burly monsters, feminist ballbusters and sexual teases. I lack the specific historical knowledge to pick up on allusions, and there’s a whole raft of cultural assumptions and experiences that I lack to make any informed assessment so I’d be little better than whoever was making the crappy lesbian joke in the first place. It is also unfortunate that any cartoons that I happen to have posted that have included any lesbians being affectionate or naked with each other have usually had hit rates 4-or-5 times the average. Ugghh.

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