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Turning #BlueForSudan: The Impact of Social Media

Following the overthrow of President Omar Al-Bashir, the Sudanese population took to the streets of the capital, Khartoum, to protest the military takeover and demand a civilian government. In recent weeks, these demands have been met with violence, leading to hundreds of injuries and deaths, over a thousand displaced and many men and women raped. The Sudanese military government has also organised an internet blackout with the objective of preventing a mass organisation of protests through social media and limiting the ability to raise awareness of atrocious government actions. Despite these efforts, the Sudanese crisis has become breaking news worldwide through online movements such as turning #BlueForSudan. Continue reading Turning #BlueForSudan: The Impact of Social Media

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RAZZ Pride Icons: Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera

Born in 1945, Marsha P. Johnson was an African-American trans rights/gay rights/AIDS activist, sex worker, and drag queen. Whenever someone asked her what the “P” in her name stood for, she would reply: “Pay it No Mind.” Sylvia Rivera was born in New York City in 1951 of Venezuelan and Puerto Rican descent, and worked as a trans rights/gay rights activist and drag queen as well. Continue reading RAZZ Pride Icons: Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera

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RAZZ Pride Icons: Virginia Prince

Virginia Prince was born Arnold Lowman in Los Angeles in 1912 and began using her mother’s clothes to cross dress at the age of 12. She later married a woman, which ended in divorce and the proceedings publicly exposed Prince’s cross dressing. Prince began living as a woman by the early 1960s and was a pioneer of transgender activism, working primarily through the written word. Continue reading RAZZ Pride Icons: Virginia Prince

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Pussy Grabbers & Right-Wing Populism: The Justification for Homophobia

By now you’ve probably seen the photograph of Dr Melania Geymonat and her girlfriend Chris (who has chosen to keep her identity largely anonymous), bloodied on a London bus in the early hours of 30 May after refusing to kiss on demand for a group of young men. After going viral, this photograph has spurred mass international outrage towards the attack, with people questioning how such a disgusting act of homophobia could still take place in the UK in 2019. Continue reading Pussy Grabbers & Right-Wing Populism: The Justification for Homophobia

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RAZZ Pride Icons: Barbara Smith

“Because I came out in the context of black liberation, women’s liberation and – most significantly – the newly emerging black feminist movement that I was helping to build, I worked from the assumption that all of the ‘isms’ were connected.” (Smith)

Barbara Smith is a Black, lesbian, feminist, and socialist who radically transformed how we think today. Born in 1946, she gained both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree before becoming heavily involved in the Women’s and Gay liberation Movements. That these were not attentive to the concerns of women of colour was glaringly obvious to her, and in 1974 Smith co-founded the Combahee River Collective, which explicitly attended to the concerns of black lesbians in black feminist politics and organising. This way of viewing black feminism as a movement through which the interconnected oppressions of race, gender, sexuality, and class could be addressed was their priority and they termed this “identity politics.” Continue reading RAZZ Pride Icons: Barbara Smith

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RAZZ Pride Icons: Simon Tseko Nkoli

“I am Black and I am gay. I cannot separate the two parts of me into secondary and primary struggles. In South Africa I am oppressed as a black person. And I am oppressed because I am gay. So when I fight for my freedom, I must fight for both oppression. All intolerance. All injustice.” (Nkoli) Continue reading RAZZ Pride Icons: Simon Tseko Nkoli

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RAZZ Pride Icons: Edythe Eyde

Regarded as the founder of the first US lesbian publication, Edythe Eyde embodied the vital enthusiasm needed to run a magazine. She produced nine newsletter-esque magazines in 1947-8 called Vice Versa, all from her desk at her daytime secretary job. In a tedious, repetitive process Edye would make carbon copies while typing the original, using the office machines. California law did not allow mail to circulate information about lesbians, so Eyde delivered her magazine by hand to her Los Angeles community of queer women, encouraging them to pass it onto her friends when they were done reading. In the first issue, Eyde wrote: “Such a publication has never appeared on the stand […] Why? Because Society decrees it thus. Hence the appearance of VICE VERSA, a magazine dedicated, in all seriousness, to those of us who will never quite be able to adapt ourselves to the iron-bound rules of Convention […] This is your magazine.” Continue reading RAZZ Pride Icons: Edythe Eyde