Sunday, October 11, 2015
Compulsory Heterosexuality by Addriene Rich
Compulsory Heterosexuality means obligatory straightness or heterosexuality as the only possible and normal sexual orientation of any woman. Adrienne Rich who is a lesbian author has been deeply hurt, when feminists writers leave the lesbian population out of their literature when they defend women from the abusive society we live in and have lived in. She rights "lesbian experience is perceived on a scale ranging from deviant to abhorrent or simply rendered invisible" when she describes the way feminist authors dismiss lesbians as they work on defending women through their writing. She references the horrible facts about how men are also deciding powerful influences like "theology, law, science and economic non-viability within the sexual division of labor" and how this and other factors like "torture and witch hunting" have forced women to deny, confuse, reject and hide their sexual orientation lest they be persecuted, but also because their opinion has been discounted. Rich finds many holes in the works of the feminist writers she sites. often coming back to the idea that those writers don't realize just how big a role "Compulsory heterosexuality" or heterosexuality has had on women. Heterosexuality has been forced on society as the one true natural orientation of women, to the point were lesbians exist because of issues women have with other women, men or both like the "female Oedipus complex". I agree with Rich that we have a huge mess of bias and misinformed people engaged in a political storm to convince women of how they truly feel and should feel. We have a long way to go to recover and clarify all that is happening, but at least many of us do believe that lesbianism is just as natural as heterosexuality.