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Posts Tagged ‘Queer Scientists’

I’m a red lipstick wearing, pin-up girl loving alternative feminist, scientist and writer. I’m out and proud about my sexuality. I am engaged to my wonderful girlfriend of fours years. I love pin-up girls of the 1940’s & 1950’s, particularly the alluring mixture of beauty, subtle sexuality, femininity and confidence. I also admire burlesque (including retro style burlesque) and the Rockabilly culture. I like also the fashion and style of the 40’s & 50’s along with alternative fashion. I’m also a feminist who stands for many ideals including – equal rights, human & civil rights, animal rights, socialism, environmentalism & conservation, social justice, acceptance of all people, the end of war and violence and encouragement of scientific, health & medical research. Professionally I am a scientist and former research student (in medical/health research) and I aspire to become a fully fledged science, health and medical writer. My dream is to write about science for a female audience and specifically a lesbian/bisexual/queer/transgendered audience. In this blog I wish to explore being a lesbian scientist along with my other diverse interests.

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It’s a simple fact – sex sells and promotes. You pick up a lesbian magazine and there is a certain amount of ‘sex’ and sexy women (including real lesbians) used to promote and symbolize and ‘speak’ to a lesbian audience of an event, movie, book or sex toy. But i also think that young lesbian women view this in a certain way – from an empowered, feminist, sex positive, non-exploitative way. They recognise the sexiness of the woman, but also see her as a fellow woman, not just an object of sexual gratification. I do think there is fine line between objectification & trivialization and empowered sexuality in making science sexy (in the form of sexy female scientists) for a lesbian audience. But I believe it can be done and be used as a tool to encourage more women, and particularly lesbian women to be interested in science. Could an image or a number of images of sexy, intelligent, empowered young female (including lesbian and bisexual) scientists be all it takes? Female scientists in lab coats, latex gloves and closed in shoes (the slightly uunsexy stark reality of working in a lab)? As a lesbian scientist I’d have to say this would spark my interest and I’d want to read more.

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As a reader of lesbian magazines, websites and blogs I don’t see many, if any, articles by science journalists or writers. Why isn’t there coverage of science in the lesbian press? Is it because it is seen as being boring or nerdy? Or is it just because the readership would not be interested? I am of the opinion that this should change. After all scientific discovery has contributed a significant amount to modern society.

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As a lesbian scientist I believe that lesbian, bisexual and queer female scientists need more visibility. There needs to be greater visibility of these professionals in the LGBQTI media and websites. Rarely do you read of lesbian scientists even more rarely of bisexual and transgendered scientists. If an increased visibility can encourage or positively affirm being a scientist as a career for young person of these sexualities it is a wonderful achievement.

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http://www.boingboing.net/2010/10/11/coming-out-in-the-sc.html

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Out+in+Science,+Technology,+Engineering+&+Mathematics.

From the OSTEM entry in the Partnering for Excellence: Innovations in Science + Technology + Engineering + Math (STEM) Education  competition.

 “Out in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (oSTEM), is a national student society that educates and develops lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and allied (LGBTQA) youth across the United States. Altogether, the oSTEM society is a sustainable infrastructure that creates co-curricular STEM opportunities at public and private universities across the country. As oSTEM grows, we plan to bring our programs to high schools and community centers. We provide students with resources, professional opportunities, and mentorships, and the national board encourages each chapter to focus on developing their local STEM communities. The growth of oSTEM depends on the national board and student leaders throughout the country. Everyone is welcome to participate and benefit from oSTEM.”

What a great organistation. There should be an organisation such as this in Australia.

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I would like to establish myself as Lesbian Science & Medical writer. I would like to carve out a niche for myself. I would relish communicating about science, medicine, health and research to a lesbian audience. I would love to have the opportunity to enlighten and inspire young lesbian/bisexual/queer or transgendered women to be interested in science.

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