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Visibility Powerpoint


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#1 brickswithoutclay

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 09:15 PM

So a few weeks ago the LGBT group at my university (of which I am a member) asked me to give an Asexuality 101 presentation to the group. I did a Q&A for their activism group last month, so they wanted to spread the visibility to the larger LGBT community at my university.

I've put the powerpoint together and wonder if anyone else could use it, or tell me if I've done anything wrong (I'm new to speaking for the entire asexual community and have researched neurotically, but I would hate to represent anyone incorrectly. Additionally, as an aromantic asexual, I am having extreme difficultly explaining romantic attraction, since there seems to be differing definitions). Note that it is specifically geared towards the LGBT crowd - there's an entire section at the end dedicated to where the two communities intersect and how we can work together.

Presentation is here (Edit 4/17: Updated version at the link). (Hopefully that works.) Lots of notes and links and stuff in the notes that I will probably not have time for in the real thing (I've only got an hour), but are freebies. (Some information is sourced from Siggy's slides, because they are amazing.)

I'm also working on one about fictional representations because I have a lot of things to say about them. Don't know if I'll have a chance to use it, but it means I might be able to make this presentation somewhat brief.

#2 Lord Happy Toast

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 09:46 PM

In all, I think it looks good. Here are a few things I would suggest modifying:
-Slide 3 notes:

Hypoactive sexual desire disorder (low levels or lack of sexual desire or fantasties) and Sexual Aversion Disorder (avoidance of genital sexual contact with a sexual partner) – listed in the DSM IV. One of the diagnostic criteria is distress relating to one’s lack of sexual desire. It is frequently used as a ‘reason’ why asexuality is a mental illness, and activists are pushing for it to be excluded from the DSM V, or to restrict it so that it stops including asexuals.

The political goals are more complex (more vague). I would recommend the following:
Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder and the Asexual Community: a history
http://sociologicali.../archives/1224'> Pathology and Asexual Politics

-(Theorized) historical asexuals on slide 11:

J.M. Barrie was probably a homosexual pedophile (I mean this in terms of attraction, which does not imply sexual activity). Attributing asexuality to him is probably because a) we hate pedophiles and b) we like him, therefore c) he couldn’t have been one, and d) he didn’t seem to display any other attractions, so e) perhaps he was asexual. You find similar things with other figures whose sexuality may well have been either pedophilic or hebephilic (e.g. Michael Jackson and Charles Dodgson).

#3 hexaquark

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 12:22 AM

Thanks for sharing your presentation, I liked how you went through pop culture depictions. I know references to Sherlock and the Doctor drive some aces crazy because it's not their cup of tea, but it is really notable what an impact fandom and (possible) asexual characters can have on visibility, whether one likes them or not.

Also, :cake: for including this phrase: "Graph from internet surveys, so hardly scientific". I believe that data was from AVEN's 2008 survey, so if anything it is an illustration of a small part of the community, not necessarily asexual people as a whole. While most people explain that when they present it, sometimes it circulates unsourced (I'm looking at you tumblr) and it makes me go [citation needed] :P

I can link this thread from our masterpost if this is alright with you?

#4 Lord Happy Toast

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 12:49 AM

On the issue of "Graph from internet surveys, so hardly scientific," we sometimes make caveats like this, but most scientists studying asexuality (basically everyone besides Tony Bogaert) do their data collection...as internet surveys. It's more appropriate to call it a "convenience sample" which is not the methodologically most sound way to do things, but it's commonly done especially when you're dealing with subpopulations where getting a sizable sample with a probability sample would be extremely cost prohibitive and might not make the result all that much more sound.

#5 zoidberger

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 02:49 AM

As far as an introduction, I thought this was a pretty nice little slide-show. I'm not sure if I would get too deep into the demi/grey-A just because it can make explaining a bit murky... though you said you are talking to the LGBT community mostly, so maybe it wouldn't be as much of an issue.

While I'm not a doctor who or sherlock holmes fan, I think it's a good idea to point out mainstream figures that people might be able to identify. Maybe a mention that Sheldon is a good asexual example but that he obviously has an extreme aromantic type of deal going on.

Anyway, good work, it looks great! :cake:
Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

#6 brickswithoutclay

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 10:51 PM

Thank you all!

I went into the demi/grace stuff specifically because, when I did my Q&A, there was a girl who was extremely interested in the demisexual information and had the "oh my god I think that's me," moment, so I wanted to cover it, especially since I don't know what has happened since then, whether she's identifying as demi or not, etc. (It's similar to why I use pan- whenever I talk about hetero- homo- bi- sexual/romantic - we have a member who's pansexual and no one ever mentions it.)

Like zoidberger said, I mostly wanted to cover the ace-readable characters because they are characters people might know and because, for me anyway, it's made the explanation of asexuality much easier. My sister still refers to being asexual as being like Sherlock, since that was the original way that it was easiest to explain to her. And it's also a good argument against the "asexuality is boring" thing, as well as showing how (unless you're New Zealand) asexual-readable characters are aliens/socially inept/etc, and how that's an issue. That entire issue is something very interesting and frustrating to me, so.

I'll put "convenience sample" on the graph instead, then. I mainly just wanted to convey that it wasn't necessarily a completely accurate reflection of the asexual community (which is hard to measure anyway because of invisibility, different definitions, etc).

You can certainly put it on the masterpost! :) I'm glad it might help someone else, too.

#7 hexaquark

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 12:06 AM

I'll put "convenience sample" on the graph instead, then. I mainly just wanted to convey that it wasn't necessarily a completely accurate reflection of the asexual community (which is hard to measure anyway because of invisibility, different definitions, etc).

You can certainly put it on the masterpost! :) I'm glad it might help someone else, too.

Iím mostly bothered by people assuming community demographics are going to be the same as general population demographics (too much of a leap for me, so I like when sources are noted). The data from that survey is certainly useful for illustration of AVEN community LGBTQ-ness. It's too bad the data from AAW last year is less easy to interpret due to the way some questions were set up...

Iíve added this presentation to the masterpost, thanks again! ^_^

#8 Siggy

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:25 AM

The source of the graph is from here and here. I don't properly cite it because it's really impossible to do that in a presentation. It originally came from my own blog post, where it is properly cited.

It's too bad the data from AAW last year is less easy to interpret due to the way some questions were set up...

I think some useful statistics could be extracted by someone with access to the AAW data, but I'm still waiting for it to happen. :(

Anyway, the presentation. The slides look great! Looking at (possibly) asexual characters and people is a great angle, because it uses concrete examples to simultaneously show asexual experiences as well as how society views asexuality. Yet again, I am reminded that I am not necessarily the only, the first, or the best person to have presented on asexuality, I'm just someone who did a lot of self-promotion. :)

I would keep demi/gray in. For some audiences, that's an additional layer of complication and just makes things harder. But with college queer audiences, they love complications, because they know very well sexuality stuff is complicated. In fact if you present it as simple, they won't buy it.

But I've had bad experiences with demisexuality in particular. I've gotten hostile reactions. And I've gotten, "Oh, that's like me!" reactions too, which I'm not so sure is very positive. See, the critics say that demisexuality describes an unreasonably large number of people. If audience members are regularly "realizing" they fit in this category, it appears to me that either the critics are right, or most of the realizers are not understanding it properly. I would include demisexuality anyway, but yeah.

My blog's LGBTA section
A blog going beyond ace-101: The Asexual Agenda
Do you like blogging or writing? Submit a piece to the Carnival of Aces this month.


#9 Lord Happy Toast

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:56 AM

Strictly speaking, we don't actually know how common demisexuality is in the general population. All we know is that a) a great many people (probably most) aren't demisexual, and b) in our current cultural climate, demisexuality makes people feel weird and/or different. So far as I know, it's not something that sexuality researchers have ever bothered to investigate. The only time I recall seeing it was a single case in Lisa Diamond's book Sexual Fluidity, where someone described it (as her experience) and asked, "What do you call THAT?" (I wanted to say, "demisexuality.")

#10 brickswithoutclay

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:13 PM

Strictly speaking, we don't actually know how common demisexuality is in the general population. All we know is that a) a great many people (probably most) aren't demisexual, and b) in our current cultural climate, demisexuality makes people feel weird and/or different. So far as I know, it's not something that sexuality researchers have ever bothered to investigate. The only time I recall seeing it was a single case in Lisa Diamond's book Sexual Fluidity, where someone described it (as her experience) and asked, "What do you call THAT?" (I wanted to say, "demisexuality.")


Additionally, c) some people (like my mother, for instance, who refuses to believe that asexuality in women is real because she insists that no women feel primary sexual attraction to anyone, and that most women make up sexual comments and act sexually to look cool, because that was her experience) may not recognize that demisexuality is not the norm, especially if they grow up in very religious contexts. And it's even more invisible than asexuality, which is difficult to measure and not well researched already.




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