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Pramana

Nat Titman's Illustrated Asexual Community History!

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Pramana

Nat Titman (paranoidgynandroid or quarridors) is notable for starting an asexual community on LiveJournal in 2002 and for writing AVEN's Big FAQ. They have recently published an illustrated history of early online asexual communities titled "Asexuality BC (Before Cake)". The article is illuminating for a number of reasons, including Titman's explanations for decisions made by themself and David Jay when defining terminology and creating symbols. Despite first appearing on one of Nat Titman's personal websites last fall, I don't think the article has been discussed on AVEN until now.

https://graphicexplanations.info/2017/10/29/asexuality-bc-before-cake/

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BionicPi

This is a really cool article!

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InquisitivePhilosopher

That's an interesting article; I didn't know that there were asexual references in articles and T.V. shows in the 90s (I didn't know Doctor Who existed at the time), but I think that's because of where and how I grew up. I agree with them; the one, big downside was that AVEN wasn't as diverse in the beginning, socio-economically. Only private, college-educated students from middle-class and upper middle-class educated families seemed to be represented. So, it kind of felt awkward and difficult for, say, a would-be first-generation college student to try and follow their scholarly discussions or make friends with them because their backgrounds and English language were different.

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Pramana

Here is a video of the talk presented by Nat Titman at the 2012 World Pride Asexual Conference.
 

 

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Tuple

Thanks for sharing the article.

 

I find it quite interesting that Nat mentions the aromantics being excluded and that was certainly my experience. In the early 2000s I came across AVEN while questioning. I joined AVEN but after a while it seemed like it was so focused on dating and relationships that I felt I excluded and I left the community. It's only been in recent years that I've come back to AVEN because now there's recognition of romantic orientation, including aromanticism, and there's even a thread for aros.

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Pramana
57 minutes ago, Tuple said:

Thanks for sharing the article.

 

I find it quite interesting that Nat mentions the aromantics being excluded and that was certainly my experience. In the early 2000s I came across AVEN while questioning. I joined AVEN but after a while it seemed like it was so focused on dating and relationships that I felt I excluded and I left the community. It's only been in recent years that I've come back to AVEN because now there's recognition of romantic orientation, including aromanticism, and there's even a thread for aros.

It's fortuitous that we're starting to see more representation for aromantics, including sexual aromantics, in online communities. But even though there's a fair amount of asexuality research out by now, there's still nothing that's focused on aromantics.

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daveb

On the other hand, it seems like sexual people often tend to conflate aromanticism with asexuality. At least it seems that way from my asexual heteromantic viewpoint. :) (in other words, if you're not interested in sex you're not going to be interested in dating or relationships or any of that)

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Tuple
On 8/19/2018 at 5:47 PM, daveb said:

it seems like sexual people often tend to conflate aromanticism with asexuality

I've noticed that too, and I think that's why it seems like nobody knows what aromanticism is, which is why there's no research being done, as Pramana pointed out.

 

On 8/19/2018 at 3:24 PM, Pramana said:

But even though there's a fair amount of asexuality research out by now, there's still nothing that's focused on aromantics.

 

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