During their presentation “Politics of solidarity/Politics of sexuality, beyond the framework of identity" at the Homonationalism and Pinkwashing Conference, the RAHA Iranian Feminist collective presented a list of dos and don’ts for those interested in queerness in Iran.
These guidelines of course apply beyond the context of Iran.
- Don’t project definitions, values and understanding. Language matters, but is imperfect
- While identity labels are useful, they can also be harmful
- Sometime identifying as gay may not share your world view. They may not see increased visibility as being equal to freedom.
- However, don’t assume they are different from yourself
- Practices have different meaning from context to context. For example, male hugging and kissing
- Do situate yourself, who you are, who you are addressing and the information you encounter
- Recognise the regulation of sexuality in your own context and society
- Make links between nationalism and the regulation of sexuality in some societies
- Don’t perpetuate Islamophobia or racism . Remember that racism part of nation building
- Do recognise that Islamic beliefs are a realm of interpretations
- Don’t imagine that in this poilitcal environment, pressure will bring about sexual liberation in Iran
- Do recognise where your power will be most effective
(At least that is what I believe the guidelines were. My connection wasn’t too great, and I had to fill out a few blanks)