May 062013

People who define themselves as bisexual or be read to, are exposed to a specific discrimination. This manifests itself firstly in the invisibility of bisexuality and the other in stereotypes about bisexuals. The concept of "homophobia" here is inadequate and can have various forms of discrimination against bisexuals, but also a discrimination of lesbians and transgender gendering not explain. Since different gender and sexual identities are summarized suppression mechanisms can not be specifically named. Moreover, the word 'phobia' for a pathologizing and psychologizing reading provides.

Biphobie, Bi-negativity, mono sexism, Bifeindlichkeit?

Besides homosexual hostile stereotypes, there are some stereotypes that are specific to bisexuals. These stereotypes and bisexual invisibility are referred for several years of Bisexualitätstheoretiker_innen as "Biphobie", "Bifeindlichkeit", "Bi-negativity" or "mono sexism". In the following, the term Bifeindlichkeit used to describe the above-mentioned processes. First I'll show the invisibility of bisexuality and then try to deconstruct stereotypes against bisexuals.

Invisibility of bisexuality

The invisibility of bisexuality in the entire society begins with that ein_e Bisexuelle_r not on seinem_ihrer Festival is recognizable: A "same-sex" kiss is as gay or lesbian read, a "gegengeschlechtlicher" Kiss as heterosexual. Overlooked here is that all those involved can be for example also bisexual. But also in the media, in politics and the law, in the Lesbian and gay movement, in historiography and in science bisexuals are barely visible and invisible. Often bisexuality is denied even - even by lesbians and gay men. The New York Times ran the headline, for example, in 2005: "Straight, Gay or Lying?" and insinuated that bisexual, to lie when you specify of their sexual identity. The right to define his sexual identity itself was arranged just like the existence of this sexual identity. The study "gender constructions and representations of lesbian, gay, bisexual, TRANS * inter * (LSBTI) in schoolbooks" the trade union education and knowledge comes to the conclusion that "in schoolbooks heteronormativity largely uncritically is reproduced. Lesbians, gays and bisexuals are represented not or on the edge". Here is so acute need for action: school textbooks used in the teaching of all subjects must be fundamentally revised. Pupils need to something about the existence of trans * inter * and learn their experiences of discrimination and violence, also gay and bi hostility must be treated in the classroom. This includes the stereotype-free representation of LGBT * I * and by people who are not the typical gender stereotypes in school textbooks.

In the print and broadcast media bisexuals are also underrepresented. A study of Stonewall UK studied 168 hours of material on prime time television BBC One and BBC Two, and found not a single mention of bisexuality. Another study analyzed the Stonewall English children's and youth television and evaluated this program of 126 hours from different transmitters. In only 4.5% of the evaluated program was reported about gays, lesbians and bisexuals in only 0.6% realistic and positive. Bisexuality was discussed in about 5 minutes of the sighted program, which represents approximately 0.07% of the evaluated material and about 1.4% of the material treated, the lesbians, gays and bisexuals. A positive and realistic reporting was not at all. In the stereotypical coverage of bisexuals are gender differences: bisexual women are more represented as promiscuous, bisexual men rather than feminim.

Stereotypes against bisexual

Widespread features of Bifeindlichkeit are in addition to the previously discussed claim that there is no bisexuality, various explanations why call yourself "but" people as bisexual: Bisexual people are called "confused" or "undecided" means, their bisexuality is a " phase "reduced. It is therefore denied that bisexuality equal footing with homo-and heterosexuality is (other sexual identities are also made invisible), claiming that bisexuals are actually homosexual or heterosexual. Bisexual request is considered in these discussions as well as a precursor of homosexuality. If the existence of bisexuality is accepted, it is often seen as a variant of homosexuality, which also reproduces the invisibility.

The researcher Lisa M. Diamond of the University of Utah refuted in a ten-year longitudinal study of this bifeindliche prejudice, when questioned bisexual women from adolescence to adulthood. 92% of women surveyed who identified themselves as bisexual at the beginning of the study, have also ten years later as bisexual or "unlabeled" identified.

Even the contrary assertion of a ubiquitous bisexuality poses danger to Bifeindlichkeit. Already Sigmund Freud spoke early 20th Century by a fundamental "bisexual [n] system of man" - but also served the bifeindliche prejudice that everyone adds to a bisexual phase is either homosexual or heterosexual. Experiences of discrimination and violence faced by bisexuals are hidden and made invisible, while the self-identifications of non-bisexual people held to be invalid.

De legitimacy of bisexuality can be promoted also by lesbians and gay men. So accused often bisexual, to want to take advantage of heterosexual privilege or be too cowardly to commit to "Correct sexual identity". Also the claim that bisexuals would tell gay and lesbian policy, is a typical bi hostile statement. These prejudices negate that bisexual in heteronormative contexts are discriminated against, because they define themselves as heterosexual and thus never enjoy the same privileges as straight people. Nevertheless, there are several documented cases of exclusions of bisexual from LGBT *-group. The term LGBT * here you can bi and TRANS * hostility, which is exercised by lesbians and gay men, undetected. Were, for example, in the "gay Softball World Series 2010" three players disqualified because they are bisexual. Five players had this answer when the competition committee testify whether they are attracted to "mostly of men" or "predominantly by women". Then in the Committee voted the player as "gay", and which player is considered to be "not gay", which led to the expulsion of three players. A research project of the University of Brighton, 30% of respondents bisexual said to have experienced discrimination by lesbian, gay and trans people, 19% reported bullying and exclusion in LGBT * nature or LGBT *-events.

BI hostility is also linked to the Sexualization of bisexuality. So an overly sexualized portrayal of bisexual, it takes place is monogamous to live also the prejudice of promiscuity and polyamory of all bisexual and that the alleged inability of bisexual, not only in the media. This is justified with the argument cissexistischen and reproducing Zweigenderung have bisexual allegedly at the same time "male" and "female" partners. A sexual double standard is also important in this context: (bisexual) women are actually non-monogamous behavior more devalued than non-monogamous living (bisexual) men. Bisexual women with non-monogamous lifestyles are affected in particular by an accusation of promiscuity, which suggests that a person may have multiple Partner_innen. Derogatory violent terms such as "slut" to brand living non-monogamous women undermine the sexual self-determination of women. In anti-promiscuity discourses, always also an intersectional perspective should be considered with as in white-dominated contexts, for example black and Jewish women be particularly sexualized or immoral represented. Bisexual women and particularly those who describe themselves as non-monogamous, are also often considered "sexually available" or sexual identity is reduced to the alleged desire to group sex.

To date, the bifeindliche accusation holds that bisexuals would spread HIV among heterosexuals. Already in the 1980s, bisexuals were placed under general suspicion of being responsible for the transmission of HIV, which led to the presentation of the allegedly dangerous sexual identity bisexuality. The charge is accompanied by a general stigmatization of HIV-positive and has scientific studies not stand: Thus, for example, in the U.S., only 1% of those affected by HIV cases women who have received the virus from a bisexual man.

Also in bi mergers that formed in the 1970s, exclusions occurred due to a dominance of white and male assets. Experiences of discrimination of black bisexual bisexual women and bisexual of colour were little discussed why many women engaged in the second wave of the feminist movement. But also in lesbian feminist groups bisexual women were often no connection, as many feminists generally reject sexual contacts with men and excluded bisexual women of their political work. If bisexual women of the claim against sex not joined with men, were accused of "deliberately against the feminist thing to have decided". As "Nestbeschmutzerinnen" would you "with the enemy collaborators". Example is the accusation of the feminist author Loretta Ulm Schneider: "women who practice bisexuality today lead very privileged life, not challenging male supremacy. In fact they undermine the feminist fight"(all quotes are for mouths, Kerstin (2004):"I love the people and not the sex".) Women with bisexual experiences). Bisexuality was therefore considered to be a fundamental problem and not accepted as sexual identity. This increased also the invisibility of bisexuality in particular feminist currents. Bisexual experiences were not addressed - so the dichotomy was reproduced "hetero/homo" again and again. Similar experience made bisexual activists at the beginning of the Lesbian and gay movement in the 1970s. In the "Gay Liberation Front" many bisexuals were organized since its inception. But later it came also to an exclusion of bisexual people because all activists had to confess to a homosexual or heterosexual identity. Either it was set up described enemy bi claim that bisexual just down the road are in the homosexuality or bisexuality was also invisible.

Final consideration

There are many facets of Bifeindlichkeit and unfortunately the theme in discourses about rights of LGBT people * is far too little attention. This is also the state of research: In very few studies that deal with discrimination on grounds of sex or sexual identity, the needs of bisexuals are known as autonomous and investigated. But it is not enough, bisexual people only as an appendage of lesbians and gays

consider - their experiences need to be addressed independently to avoid Bifeindlichkeit and its consequences. Also, the entanglement of intersectional Bifeindlichkeit with racism, anti-Semitism, sexism, ableism and other power relations has not been adequately explored. Recent political debates have it take effect.

Freddy Schindler

Biphobie: invisibility of bisexuality and stereotypes about bisexuals | GREEN YOUTH