Openly Gay Public Figures Like Ian Thorpe Matter

Openly Gay Public Figures Like Ian Thorpe Matter

Ian Thorpe, despite his humble demeanour, is probably figures very familiar with making history. He is Australia’s most successful swimmer, with a slew of Olympic medals as well as world records. He revealed to Michael Parkinson that he was gay and made history. Last night by becoming Australia’s most prominent gay sportsperson.

Thorpe, a 31-year-old man, would have witnessed significant changes in his attitudes. Toward homosexuality throughout the course of his adult life. He spoke with Parkinson about the homophobia he experienced at his high school. For all men and the effects it had on his life as a teenager. He also mentioned being subject to homophobic verbal abuse, even before he came out as gay.

Thorpe’s announcement that he is gay suggests that he believes Australian society has improved significantly in recent years. Maybe Reverend Fred Nile’s tweet, which stated simply, “You are champion. That is all that matters,” is a confirmation of his rightness. He is a conservative politician who is well-known for praying for the Sydney Mardi Gras in the 1980s.

Are Openly Gay Public Figures Important?

Together with other researchers and the National Library of Australia I am part of the Australian Lesbian. And Gay Life Stories oral historian project. To find out what it was like to be gay or lesbian in Australia. We are interviewing 60 men and women. We have realized how important openly gay public figures are for many of our lesbian and gay friends as we go along.

Many Australians over 50, especially those born before 1940. Remember feeling isolated growing up, and homosexuality was largely hidden from the public. When asked what the most significant changes they have seen in their lives regarding homosexuality. Nearly all the interviewees mentioned the increasing number of public figures who are open to identifying as gay or lesbian, and the inclusion of homosexuality throughout popular culture.

Generational Changes Figures

Participants born after 1960s are now of age during a period of dramatic increase in visibility for lesbian and homosexual people in popular culture. Numerous lesbian interviewees, even those from rural areas, referred to Ellen DeGeneres’ public coming-out in 1997 and her popularity among mainstream TV audiences as important factors in increasing acceptance of homosexuality.

We have found that the younger participants, especially those born in 1990s, bring a different perspective to the project. It is important to remember that homophobia remains a problem in Australian society. However, Australians born after 1984 are now able to access a large number of lesbian and gay public figures. The internet allows for easy access to a global gay/lesbian culture.

Many of our younger participants told us that they knew of celebrities who were gay and lesbian before they met one in real life. It has been fascinating to hear the stories of many younger participants about how being more aware of gay and lesbian public figures has helped them in their lives. Many gay and lesbian youth grew up in isolation. However, it has become possible to live a happy and open gay or lesbian lifestyle.

Although the interviews show that attitudes toward homosexuality in Australia have improved rapidly over the past 30 year, it is clear that many lesbians and gay people still face homophobia.

Thorpe’s World

Ian Thorpe was born in New South Wales, 1982. He began his life in a time when it was still illegal to have sexual intercourse with men. Before he began training with his first swimming team, the HIV/AIDS epidemic exacerbated homophobia in some Australian communities. He was exposed to homophobic questions and invasive sexuality as a teenager. Thorpe’s decision last night to come out will accomplish at least two things.

The first is that young Australians will be able to see the dismantling homophobic stereotypes about gay and lesbian people. Ian Thorpe is a long-standing Australian icon and one of the most prominent gay men. His visibility will also challenge homophobia in sport, which has long been known for having problematic attitudes towards lesbian and gay people.

While Ian Thorpe’s decision not to be openly gay was not an easy one, it is a significant milestone for Australia and him personally. His public announcement shows a personal comfort level with his sexuality. Let’s all hope this comfort can be shared across the country and that we can recognize the rich contributions of gay and lesbian citizens in public life.

Australian Gay And Lesbian Christmas Families

Australian Gay And Lesbian Christmas Families

I lived in Brisbane when, every Christmas, an older group of gay men that I knew would gather in a pub. Most people know the joy of spending some time with friends and enjoying a few beers over the holidays. At the time I wasn’t aware of the ritual these men were performing each year. Now, it is obvious that they sought out and spent time with their chosen families on the day when escape from domesticity and family seemed impossible.

If Christmas rituals are compatible with a person’s belief system, it can bring great comfort. Many lesbians and gay Australians enjoy sharing gifts, enjoying festive meals and participating in traditional cultural rites. Some people find it difficult to avoid the seasonal consumerism that is so prominent.

It is clear that Christmas can cause complex stress for many members of the gay and lesbian population. If families are unwilling to accept or include lesbians and gay Australians in the celebrations, it may be difficult for them to spend Christmas with their family.

Others may feel the need to return home for holidays, bringing back memories and experiences of homophobia from childhood or adolescence. Some lesbians and gay Australians do not have a place to call home. This population is more likely to be homeless than the rest of Australia.

Simple As Christmas Carolling

Even something as simple as carolling in the local shopping centre can pose a problem for lesbians and gay Australians. The Salvation Army, a prolific performer, has a sad record on lesbians and gay issues. They even sent a submission against equality in marriage to the House of Representatives Inquiry into this topic in 2012.

While lesbians and gay Australians may not have been included in traditional Christmas traditions, this time of the year highlights how lesbians and gay Australians have made their own rituals and created support networks.

These are not only important during the holiday season, but all year. One example is the Brisbane Men group, but there are many others. The Australian Lesbian and Gay Life Stories oral story project offers more.

This project is part of my research and includes interviews with five generations of gay men in Australia. The social attitudes towards gay Australians and lesbians has changed remarkably over the past 60 years, a period that many of our participants have lived through.

Most of our male participants can recall a time when having sex with another person was illegal. Many lesbians recall the loneliness and invisibility that ruined significant parts of their lives.

Stories Of Discrimination

Our interviews capture stories of discrimination, prejudice, and loneliness. However, many lesbians and gay Australians responded by creating lives that were creative and inspiring. Many lesbian women, who had told children were not in their future, did raise children. Often, they did so with partners and sometimes with the help of gay male donors.

Some of our male respondents recall that they were told by their families to expect loneliness and unhappiness if they revealed their sexuality. During the dark years of HIV/AIDS, when so many lives were lost, gay men stood side-by-side with one another. These are some of the most touching accounts of friendship and support that have been record in Australia’s history.

Some members of Australia’s gay/lesbian population question the idea of a united community, and choose to ignore it. Others embrace it.

Australian Lesbian and Gay Life Stories includes stories from young people who can have their same-sex partner in family celebrations and rituals. They also expect their partners to be include in the celebrations with their friends and relatives.

One lesbian couple combines traditional and community experiences. They take their children to a Rainbow family barbecue as well as a traditional lunch with their grandparents during the holiday season.

Retired Gay Man Christmas

A week ago, I spoke with a retired gay man friend. Although his family is very important to him, he said that he was most looking forward to Christmas with his gay male friends. He was without his parents and he missed the time with his siblings, nieces, and nephews.

He turned to his peers for help during a recent crisis of health. It was these men who provided the support, both on an emotional and practical level.

Many lesbians and gay Australians have not been able to enjoy the domestic Christmas depicted in media. This is becoming a growing problem for heterosexual Australians. Increasing numbers of people live in single-person households.

Some people experience financial hardships or seasonal unemployment. People can become isolated during the holidays due to broken family relationships. Lifeline and other charities point out that many Australians can feel very unhappy during the festive season.

Many have resorted to the support of other members of this group due to Australia’s historical marginalization of lesbians and gays. Our oral history project talks a lot about “chosen family” and it is clear that support networks provide a valuable antidote for marginalization and exclusion.

It is evident, too, that gay and lesbian support rituals (and others from the wider LGBT community) can be a valuable model for individuals who might feel isolated in modern society.

Learning From The Lives Of Gay And Lesbian Australians

Learning From The Lives Of Gay And Lesbian Australians

Although Australia’s legal system might not reflect this, the majority of Australians supported same-sex marriage gay in 2014. This support was unimaginable 20 years ago for anyone but the most optimistic gay or lesbian. It was only 1997 that Tasmania legalized male-to-male intercourse.

Homophobia is still a problem today, but it’s not as institutionalized or deeply rooted as it was in the past. It is amazing to see how fast attitudes towards lesbians and gay Australians have changed over the past 20 years. This is the fastest change in social attitudes to occur in Australian history.

Australian Lesbian and Gay Life Stories is a national oral history project that aims to further explore this transformation. This project is a collaboration of the National Library of Australia, Macquarie University, and two other Australian universities. It was fund by the Australian Research Council.

The lives of different generations of lesbian and gay Australians will give insight into how it was to be gay or lesbian in Australia between the 1940s and the present. At a time when attitudes have changed so dramatically,

Stories Of Ordinary Australians Gay

Five generations of ordinary gay men, and five generations of lesbians will be interview. This project will provide deep insight into the lives of individuals as they navigate social change. This is Australia’s first nationwide oral history project that includes a wide range of lesbian and gay people.

Interviewers travel across Australia to conduct interviews. They visit locations from inner-city apartments to cattle stations. The National Library of Australia will deposit the results, which is Australia’s largest collection of oral history.

The National Library pioneered the use of oral history to engage with the public in this country. It also took advantage of significant technological and participatory online media advantages. Interviewees have control over access conditions, but some interviewees have agreed to make their interviews public through the National Library’s site.

These Are The Two Central Goals Of This Project Gay

It will first increase the digital library of the National Library of Australia by providing 300 hours of oral histories from lesbians and gays. It will also obtain primary information from an already marginalised community to allow for its incorporation into the national narrative.

The project will also examine how lesbians and gays have negotiated extraordinary social change and its impact on their lives and cultural narratives

This project recognizes the importance of oral histories from gay and lesbian people that have been collect by other researchers, such as the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives. There are limitations to existing interviews, which point to the need of a project like this. Some interviews are not widely accessible and remain in the possession only of local researchers.

Community repositories don’t usually have the resources to support large-scale preservation projects. Many oral history interviews are tape. Many of these tapes have poor sound quality and have been damage over time. They also don’t meet international or national technological standards for oral histories. Additionally, most oral histories focus on gay and lesbian activists, not ordinary Australians.

Whose Stories Will You Tell?

Interviews are being conducted with people born between 1930 and 1994, who identify as gay attracted. The participants are divided into five generations, which has been proven successful in the Australian Generations: Live Histories, Generational Change, and Australian Memory collaboration led by Professor Alistair Thomson of Monash University.

  • The Australian Lesbian and Gay Life Stories Project has several cohorts.
  • Respondents born before 1940 who reached sexual maturity during a period when homosexuality between males and females was legal and aggressively policed
  • Born between 1941-1956, and who were born during the 1960s or during the rapid social changes of the 1970s.
  • Respondents born between 1957-1966, who were still young at the time of Australia’s gay liberation movement.
  • Respondents who were born between 1967-1984 and who were alive during the HIV/AIDS epidemic and its aftermath
  • Many people born after 1985 feel that they are living in a “post-gay” era, where the meanings of lesbian and gay identity are changing.

Australian Lesbian and Gay Life Stories, a first for Australia, will be an important addition to National Library’s collection. It will be a resource similar to the Before Stonewall: Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Oral History collection held by the British Library Sound Archive Collection. Much of the Australian resource, unlike Before Stonewall will be accessible online. This will increase accessibility and transcend national borders. It will raise awareness about lesbians and gays in Australia and how they have contributed to a fundamental change in social attitudes.