Glossary

This glossary provides simple and basic definitions to some very complex concepts. It is recommended that you use these definitions as a jumping off point to more deeply engage these terms, learn how to understand them, and apply them.

fluidity

a quality that suggests flow or movement as opposed to rigidity or stasis; a socially constructed identity (one that is not only biological) can change and is therefore fluid, not fixed

gay

sexual attraction and/or behavior toward individuals of the same sex; typically used to refer to attraction between males, but also used to refer to same-sex female attraction

gender

socially constructed characteristics associated with biological sex; ie., feminine, masculine

genre

a well-established category or grouping based on similar form (aesthetic) and function; ie., drama, comedy

heteronormative

a system that places heterosexuality as the norm and privileges heterosexual relationships

heterosexism

discrimination or bias against someone or some group based on sexuality

heterosexual

sexual attraction and/or behavior toward individuals of the opposite sex

hierarchical

a system wherein certain practices, behaviors, ideas or people are valued over others

homophobia

a dislike, hatred, or fear of LGBTQ individuals and groups

homosexual

sexual attraction and/or behavior toward individuals of the same sex

hypersexual

unusual interest or excessive activity with respect to sexuality

identity politics

organizing political activism and action around identity-based discrimination or problems

ideology

a system of values and beliefs that is shared and influences behavior and action

institutional

coming from an institution or central place of power; functions to influence surrounding bodies, people, and values

intersectionality

the notion that multiple systems of oppression (ie., sexism, racism, classism, heterosexism) intersect across individuals’ lives and experiences