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Scholars Day: April 7, 2010

Shining a Bright Light on Biphobia

Society is ruled by patriarchy and the idea of a binary system. There is a gender binary: masculine and feminine. There is a sex binary: male and female. There is a sexual binary: heterosexual and homosexual. What is life like for someone who does not identify with any of these binaries? The focus of this presentation will be sexuality. The discussion will be about bisexuality and how it challenges the binary system. The focus in society is on the binaries and from the start that there are two choices; so when someone challenges these binaries, they can be made into an outcast and their lives can suffer greatly. Attention needs to be brought to biphobia and the stories of bisexuals who may have felt oppressed in life or may have had positive stories to share in order to encourage others to come out and be proud of their identity. This research proposal will bring attention to bisexuality and biphobia in our society. This is a topic that is kept well hidden and can seem like a taboo subject. Young people need to know that that there are other options besides the heterosexual binary we see portrayed in the media. Biphobia is not recognized as a problem, because the bisexual identity is not seen as a genuine, sexual identity. This research will focus on the following questions: What is biphobia? How does biphobia affect the lives of bisexuals? How do we as a society perpetuate biphobia and encourage a binary? The goal is to bring insight to this issue and demystify the idea of bisexuality.

Presenter: Angela Buchiere (Undergraduate Student)
Topic: Women and Gender Studies
Location: 217 Hartwell
Time: 11 am (Session II)