Looking at the Planet London events calendar, reading the feedback we’ve had from the first lesbian and bisexual women’s community survey, and chatting to the lesbian and bi women we know, one reflection that has repeatedly come up is the lack of well defined sub cultures in the lesbian and bi women’s scene.
I think this is partly in comparison to the men’s and gender queer scenes – you know, the kind of sub cultures in the men’s scene that help define the events and venues available – from bears to drag queens to open gender identity spaces. There are well established, easily identifiable symbols of sub culture that mean the events, nights out and venues can market effectively to target audiences.
One of the recent bits of feedback we’ve had in the Asian-les-bian blog is that it’s not always clear who events are aimed at. I think these two issues are linked – we have very few identified sub cultures and language for events organisers to use.
The small meet ups and local events have a much better handle on this – for example the BDSM or Butch/femme meets – but these are very much linked to sexual rather than social common interests.
We are often told that the women on the scene would like more events where they can meet new people and make friends. It would make sense if these events could offer a platform for women to come together in areas where they have something common – aside from going out and getting drunk. Board games, book groups, family orientated socials are all being cried out for.
I’m not entirely sure how we might begin to define sub cultures for lesbian and bi women. What are the kinds of things we have in common? A love of women in sci-fi? Starting families? I would love to hear from you and what ideas and experiences you have about what defines us as people who are women who fancy women, and how we organise that into some kind of social scene that actually meets the interests of the community.