Lesbo: politična, kulturna in socialna revija.
Izhaja od leta 1997 in je nepridobitnega značaja.
Izšla je nova številka 13-14
(jesen-zima 2001).
Pravkar izšel roman Jeanette Winterson "Pomaranče niso
edini sad"
, pred tiskom Lillian Faderman "Več kot ljubezen moških: Romantično prijateljstvo in ljubezen med ženskami od renesanse do sodobnosti".
Bibliografija literature in
gradiva z lezbično in gejevsko tematiko, ki se v slovenskem jeziku zbira od začetka 20. stoletja. Seznam materiala je v delu in stalnem dograjevanju.

LESBO 11/12
Id. 2001: SCENE

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Vrni v seznam vsebine LESBO 11/12


Lesbo is a Slovene political, social and cultural non-profit making quarterly. Its founder and publisher is the lesbian group ŠKUC-LL. The editress-in-chief is Nataša Velikonja, the design editress is Barbara Predan.

Lesbo magazine aims at sharpening the critical and intellectual blades. It promotes politics, stories and views, arts and attitudes, practices and theories about the resistance and radical fights against homophobia and any other exclusive orientations. As such it participates in wider civil, political, social and cultural efforts aiming at breaking the massive walls of civil apathy, political ignorance, ideological terror and mind exploitation.

Body Painting Playboy Girl

The 11th-12th issue of Lesbo magazine is titled “The Scenes”, because the centre of its discussion is analytical viewing of different levels of significant physical or symbolic points and places, which are marked as gay or lesbian, transgender or transsexual, in political and geographical aspect, in social or just sociable life in Slovenia. The emphasises are given to the gay & lesbian club infrastructure and dynamics, to the platforms, which generally frame the way of gay and lesbian visibility within the public sphere. But one of also relevant, but nevertheless often veiled moment of visibility of homosexuality or the relation to it comes from other “scenes”, too - from political, media, etc. How are gays and lesbians marked in Slovene politics, jurisdiction, how are they treated in working sphere etc.?

In the editorial, Nataša Sukič writes about some segments of gay and lesbian club life in Ljubljana. Her starting-point is the introduction of members' club-cards in Roza disco in the season of 1992/1993, which, in her opinion, essentially restricted ranges of gay and lesbian club culture, which were successfully gained in “the legendary K4” in previous seasons. She claims, that the club K4, Roza disco on Sundays - which till then had a strong public and media support because of the linking and mutual tolerance of various identities - due to that kind of “politics at the doors”, the politics of cultural program; it became extremely limited, but at the same time it ghettoised the gay & lesbian scene even more. She connects all of this with the simultaneous turn of the state and social atmosphere in the nineties to the provinciality and traditionalism, which make the breakthru of gay and lesbian visibility even harder. She asks, if gays and lesbians are, on the level of club culture in Ljubljana, in the open gay & lesbian clubs, such are Tiffany, Monocle or K4, still capable of rebellion or subversion with the help of satire and parody.

From the rubric “Porno-vision”

She develops these main theses further in her article “Destruction of the club culture”, which is a part of “The Rubric”, specially centred - together with “Porno-vision” - to the gay and lesbian scenes in Ljubljana. Analyses of gay and lesbian club scenes in Ljubljana are continued with the commentaries, written by Urška Sterle and Nataša Koražija. Urška Sterle, in her article “Apathy”, writes about Slovene LGBT scene, which - if we speak about its extent - has already overgrown its available places. A higher number of consumers in the scene has not brought a plurality of styles alone with it. On the contrary, the apathy, the rejection of being political subjects in general and the withdrawal into privacy, melting of styles and the uniformity constitute the dominant value consensus on it. In the “Big Banquet” Nataša Koražija focuses the view on the scene on the lesbian club Monocle. Since Nataša Sukič wrote some years ago, that 20 m2 of the lesbian territory - the size of Monocle, lesbian club in Metelkova Squat - means a revolution to her, Koražija adds, that this “revolution” is, after three years, still going on and has since expanded to 25 m2. The revolution is, she claims, that the lesbian club - in the surrounding area of the likeable gay neo-baroque of gay club Tiffany, waves of new primitivism, macho-football attitudes, imperialism of the city politics and frequent police parades - lives on. Metelkova squat is a place of most subtle urban subcultures, so let's cultivate a multi-domicile stance, let more and more people support durable ties to it!
The rubric “Porno-vision” - usually dealing with the sexual politics and theories - is, in this issue, also directed toward mapping and analysing gay and lesbian scenes and subcultures - but in a worldly context. Roman Kuhar, in his study “Episodes from the gay/lesbian history: The Subculture Is Born”, traces the birth of gay & lesbian subcultures in the beginning of the 18th Century, when the police and moral institutions first started to report about them. Especially with police reports, police harassment, convictions of sodomites and their scenes and popular press, the consciousness of the existence of sodomite subcultures started to raise. Kuhar touches several cases: from London, Paris and Amsterdam.

“10 years are enough”, Illustration by Boris Benko

The monitoring of state policy and general politics is a strong part of Lesbo magazine: in the section titled “Llobby”, Nikolai Jeffs, in his essay “10 years are enough”, analyses in details the tenth anniversary of the independence of the Republic of Slovenia. Its foundations - human rights and democracy - seem like, he states, a building-platform, which enabled the dominant elite and their priests to grab at the power; and when the façade was done, the ladder was knocked down for all the rest. Jeffs claims that the manipulation of the same-sex orientated women and men is already paradigmatic. That is to say, in 1990 all the political parties in Slovenia signed the statement “The Right To Be Different”, which could have been the very first step towards the end of discrimination and to the full acceptance of the homosexual population in Slovene society. But all obligations were already forgotten in the next year. In 1991, in the new Constitution, the article, which would assure the equality regardless of sexual orientation, was not added, and the “right to be different” became more and more redundant. Ten years are enough, he concludes, enough of this “success story” [electoral slogan of the ruling party, Liberal Democracy of Slovenia], where the restrictive jurisdiction concerning public meetings is developing, which limits the notion of politics as a protest, as a solidarity with the prosecuted and as a sociability with the free-minded; where the media sphere is restricted more and more; where police harassment to asylum seekers, to free-thinkers, to gays and lesbians occurs fact on a daily basis; where public-pool research shows extremely high rates of intolerance, even racism and fascism; where the human rights are put on the referendum and so on. But, the rebellion is continuing, since there are people, who treat human rights, democracy and creativity as a serious and unfinished project.

“I Protest!”, Illustration by Boris Benko

The section “Llobby” is continued with the pamphlet “I Protest!” by Suzana Tratnik. She speaks about the implicit, non-visible, personal and almost banal forms of discrimination. She claims, that the society, in which she lived as a teenage girl, robbed her of an essential part of adolescence, that is, the chance to research her lesbian sexuality. As she lived in a small provincial Slovene town, lesbians or gays were not any given part of society during her teenage years. It was not until her student years, in the capital, Ljubljana that she was finally connected with the lesbian lifestyle. So, she has decided - in a symbolic sense - to sue the state of Slovenia for her damaged teenage years, for not having researched her sexuality, for covering information about different sexual styles from her and because she was negatively labelled as being a sexually cold teenage girl. She values the damage on her at 5 million Slovene Tolars (approximately 25.000 US$).

The next article, entitled “In-semination”, is written by Urška Sterle. It's a commentary about the referendum concerning “the law on medically assisted artificial insemination”, which also would allow the insemination of single women. The rightwing political scene and the right orientated part of public opinion claim that the children can be “appropriately” raised only within the parental unit, consisting of a father and a mother. The result of that pressure was the referendum. The liberal part found in that kind of social statement discriminatory measure and the strategy which could lead to the slowly passing of non-equal treatment of citizens and to the lowering the equality status of women's rights. In the debate around the referendum, special emphasis was put to lesbian and handicapped women - generally within insulting, totally homophobic and fascist tones (some of them, from the media and political sphere, are printed in the “Media” rubric). 30 % of the population participated in the referendum and the great (app. 75 %) majority voted “against” the right of a single woman to have the access to artificial insemination.

Hans Ytteberg

This issue brings interviews with two state servants: with the ombudsman for human rights in Slovenia, Matjaž Hanžek, and with the Swedish ombudsman for gays and lesbians, Hans Ytteberg. Both interviews were conducted by Tatjana Greif.

The Foreign policy's part is concluded by Tom Thomson's essay “Gay and Lesbian Movement Goes To the Shopping Mall”. It is a discussion about the possibility of the anarchis-tic alternative to the political cooptation of the queer struggle. Thomson criticises the accommodation of gay & lesbian human right movement, its turn to integrationist and assimilation policy, its strong connection with consumer power, and, at the same time, its disconnection with other civil society movements, such as the struggle against the capitalist, corporate political economy, social hierarchy, systems of control and repression or state power. He claims, that the kind of non-confrontational activism, which is practised by the mainstream GL activism, is not efficient on the level of jurisdiction, school systems, etc. i.e., in all institutions of state power.
One of this issue's central topics are the results of the study “Discri-mination on the level of sexual orientation”. The entire study, which was conducted by ILGA-Europe (Tatjana Greif for Slovenia), is translated and published in the continuation of the magazine.

The section “The School” brings the second part of Andrej Zornik's feuilleton, “Homosexuality and the School”, a study which covers the treatment of homosexuality in Slovene primary and secondary schools. Special emphasise is given to the “Letter Against Homophobia”, which The Association for the non-violent communication (for it Klavdija Aničić) and 13 organisations, addressed in this spring to the public and to the state Ministry for Education, Science and Sport. This was an attempt of civil society to encourage these institutions to de-mystify speaking about homosexuality in the schools. For several years The Association for non-violent communication performed a set of work-shops about violence, discrimination and solving problems in secondary schools. A part of the program was the work-shop on homosexuality, but this year the High School for print and paper in Ljubljana rejected it because of complaints from the parents.

Metka Krašovec

The rubric “Out of the Closet” brings forth the cultural part of Lesbo magazine. It points to those public events in the Slovene gay & lesbian scene, which succeeded in breaking the high walls of public homophobia or successfully include anti-homophobic struggle in a wider social platform. Their common characteristic is their successful access to crossing-over communities, breaking out of the gay and lesbian ghetto, but - of course - without veiling the homosexual context. In previous months of 2001 those were The Bureau of Intervention, a coordination of individuals and social groups; Lesbian Library, which opened its doors on the 1st of May this year in Ljubljana; the graffiti action - group Act on the Wall; and Ljubljana's transvestite scene, with its strong public influence and recognition.
The section “Culture” is composed of three articles and some previews commenting on several aspects of cultural life concerning lesbian and gay topics. Under the title “Sex and Culture” Nataša Velikonja describes, how identity - also sexual - is articulated as a cultural phenomenon; how sexuality is organized through logic of cultural identification. It, therefore, belongs to the field of cultural or social studies: what feminist studies do to the category of “gender”, gay & lesbian studies do to the category of “sexuality”. Velikonja states that cultural identification is an important element of constructing sexual identity. She gives two examples, which show the possible impacts of artistic works on the construction of lesbian, homosexual, identity. The analysis covers the mirror-images on the paintings of Slovene artist Metka Krašovec, which are compared with the mirror-image paintings of British painter Sadie Lee. Mirror images of women are often used as a code for lesbian sexuality; despite the frequency of this motif in the history of art, Slovene art critics insist on the interpretation of mirror-images of Krašovec as the play of Narcissi. It is quite bizarre that their interpretation is so very uniform and one-dimensioned, without even a hint of openness to other possibilities. The second case touches some songs and lyrics, written by American singer and poet Patti Smith, which are coloured with the lesbian erotica. Not only with her art, but also with her gestures and images, Smith - herself straight - was one of strong identification models for lesbians. Patti Smith, especially lesbian motifs in her poetry, is presented - at the occasion of her first, July's concert in Ljubljana - in the rubric “The Portrait”.

Non-conformity in the art world, connected with the meanings around (homo)sexuality, is also the topic of the next two articles: Andreja Gomišček in the short pamphlet “Galleries in the Open Air” writes about the art, which must be accessible, vivid and free - as an exhibit on open city platforms, for example, not in the limited and dead galleries. She states, that such “free galleries” could be good for gay & lesbian art too, for its visibility, because it comprises the sense of human diversity and choice. Mavis Bayton's “Lesbians” speaks about queer core movement and music, especially in Britain. The Culture part of Lesbo is concluded with some book and musical reviews.

This issue brings a lot of short political and cultural news. It is also rich in photo and graphic material, (done by Srečo B. - Daphne, Urška Merc, etc.) giving some visual information about Ljubljana's gay and lesbian scenes. Satiric visualities and comics, made by Boris Benko, excite special curiosity and attention.

Translation: NV, EŽ

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Vrni v seznam vsebine LESBO 11/12

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