Moving away from the academic rehashing of lesbian movements that have come before, this is a modern guide to the queer culture of women exploring our new understanding of queerness at a time when young people are increasingly identifying that way, when gender is no longer considered fixed or binary, and about how all of these things converge, feeding into a women-led culture that is just as fluid as it is tangible.
What do we think about when we think about the culture of queer women? It’s no longer considered to just be short hair, dungarees and birkenstocks. In previous decades, it might have been rare shows like The L Word, celebrities like Ellen Degeneres and books by Sarah Waters. Whatever it was, though, it was usually underground, often niche and nearly always confined to outdated stereotypes.
The past few years, however, have seen lesbian culture pushed to the front and centre of the mainstream. Lesbian culture today is Villanelle threatening Eve with a knife in her own home. It’s the glove from Carol. It’s the entire cast of Ocean’s 8 and their outfits. It’s Rachel Weisz’s spit. It is obviously Cate Blanchett. And, increasingly, it’s being recognised as something wholly separate from the culture of gay, white, cis men. But it’s still not something that has been widely written about – yet.
There is not one way to be queer, but queer culture exists and is worth celebrating.