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Download Becoming Two-Spirit: Gay Identity and Social Acceptance in by Brian Joseph Gilley PDF

By Brian Joseph Gilley

The Two-Spirit guy occupies a unique position in local American tradition, balancing the male and the feminine spirit whilst he attempts to mixture homosexual and local identification. The accompanying ambiguities of gender and tradition come into brilliant reduction within the strong and poignant Becoming Two-Spirit, the 1st e-book to take an in-depth examine modern American Indian gender range. Drawing on a wealth of observations from interviews, oral histories, and conferences and ceremonies, Brian Joseph Gilley offers an intimate view of the way Two-Spirit males in Colorado and Oklahoma fight to redefine themselves and their groups.

The Two-Spirit males who look in Gilley’s publication converse frankly of homophobia inside their groups, a continual prejudice that's principally misunderstood or misrepresented by means of outsiders. Gilley provides targeted money owed of the ways that those males alter homosexual and local id as a method of facing their alienation from tribal groups and households. With those compromises, he indicates, they build an identification that demanding situations their alienation whereas whilst situating themselves inside modern notions of yankee Indian identification. He additionally indicates how their creativity is mirrored within the groups they construct with each other, the advance in their personal social practices, and a countrywide community of people associated of their look for self and social acceptance.

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Additional resources for Becoming Two-Spirit: Gay Identity and Social Acceptance in Indian Country

Sample text

Most gatherings follow a basic format of socializing, some cultural events such as talking circles, and a small powwow, while others incorporate more ceremonial practices such as sweat lodges. HIV/AIDS funding from Indian health agencies and AIDS prevention grants are often used to sponsor such gatherings; therefore, all tend to have workshops, talks, or sweats that deal specifically with these issues. Due to the negative impact of alcohol on the Native community, all the retreats are alcohol- and drug-free, and often incorporate substance abuse workshops as an aspect of the gathering.

Most of the Two-Spirit men from the Denver Society and Green Country Society describe becoming TwoSpirit as a journey. It is a journey undertaken not only by individuals but by groups of people who together attempt to negotiate the rocky terrain of contemporary Native identity, tribal identity, and how to 18 Seeking Self- and Social Acceptance reconcile what they know non-gay Indians think about their sexuality and gender difference. It would be redundant to point out that the path to becoming TwoSpirit is agentive, especially in light of scholarship that illustrates the ways people resist domination and alienation in small, everyday ways (Scott 1985, 1990).

Sheila and Glen helped temper Andy’s intensity with their mild manner and Indian humor. However, ceremonial activities required a reverence that many people found uncomfortable, and participation in that aspect of the society fluctuated except for a committed core group. Andy organized some form of ceremonially oriented activity at least once a week, such as practicing Sun Dance songs, sweat 40 From Gay to Indian lodges, and smaller ceremonies to help group members who were in need of spiritual guidance.

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