We’ve been celebrating LGBT+ history month in the SAYiT office by talking about and sharing important LGBT+ figures, books, and organisations. The theme of LGBT+ History Month 2020 is ‘Prose, Poetry and Plays’, but we’ve also focused on LGBT+ representation across different media and throughout history.
The LGBT+ community of today is making history for young LGBT+ people of tomorrow.
We asked the heart of SAYiT, our young people, for their top picks of LGBT+ TV, Film, Media and Books. The word cloud above shows the many answers they gave.
Our young people’s responses focused on the importance of representation, “not to mention a few … other things like fitting in, loving our body, consent, and culture in other countries.” SAYiT Young Person
Here are some of SAYiT’s Young People’s Top Picks for LGBT+ TV, Film and Books:
Hit animated series, popular with younger and older audiences alike. Created by Rebecca Sugar, who identifies as non-binary, the show follows the ‘Crystal Gems’ and half-human half-gem Steven.
Throughout the show, identity isn’t chained to heteronormativity or gender. The show isn’t LGBT+ because it simply has a single LGBT+ character or storyline, but because queerness is embedded in every single episode.
The show made history with the first same-sex marriage proposal in a cartoon, and the wedding which followed between Ruby and Sapphire (two gems who fuse to form Garnet – voiced by Estelle).
Further ‘fusions’ of characters, like Steven and Connie’s ‘Stevonnie’, uses they/them pronouns, and represent non-binary and genderqueer identities. There are even later ‘fusions’ of multiple gems like ‘Fluorite’ – symbolising queer poly-amorous relationships.
Teen Vogue called it “one of the Queerest Teen shows ever”.
This Netflix TV show has portrayals of queer young people that are nuanced and fluid.
The show tackles its namesake ‘Sex Education’ (or often the lack of it) in schools. The storylines and characters speak bluntly about sex and relationship problems which affect their students regardless of identity.
Asexual and Aromantic identities are less frequently depicted in LGBT+ media, but Sex Education’s Dr Jean Milburn (played by Gillian Anderson) explores them with student Florence.
When Florence says, “I think I might be broken”, Dr Jean reminds her that “Sex doesn’t make us whole”. This whole encounter is an incredible moment for asexual representation, particularly in a show with sex as a key theme.
Trans Teen Survival Guide
“A really useful book for me” SAYiT Young Person
The writers of Trans Teen Survival Guide, Owl and Fox Fisher, who both identify as trans and non-binary, have called it “vital reading for trans people and allies alike”.
They wrote the book because as young people they didn’t have the information they needed about transitioning, and how to make it through adolescence as a trans person. So, they decided to write a guide for teens today.
As well as definitions and tips, the book is full of letters and coming out stories from teens – it’s a community resource!
The books covers topics from first hand experiences of hormone therapy, to fetishization and dating.
Fox Fisher said:
“We want trans teens to feel supported, represented, and listened to, and we hope that this book speaks to them and helps them in their journey of finding what feels comfortable for them. We want them to have the information that we never received growing up. We hope it gives them the ability to be themselves — whatever that means to them. ”
If that’s not a great way to help make LGBT+ history for future young people – we don’t know what is!
Thanks to SAYiT’s young people for your incredible picks – we’re so proud and glad that every month is LGBT+ Future Month at SAYiT!