Bajan Queens Essay

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Nikou Mehdizadeh Bajan Queen’s, Nebulous Scenes: Sexual Diversity in Barbados Critical Analysis The article Bajan Queens, Nebulous Scenes: Sexual Diversity by David Murray is about the people he conducted research through his fieldwork on the individuals who identify themselves as ‘queens” in the island of Barbados. In their society, a ‘queen’ was a term coined with someone who was considered ‘transgender’, (in a north American context) or someone born with male gentilia but saw themselves as a girl (Murray 2009:2). Throughout the article, Murray argues that even though the diversity of sexuality in Barbados is influenced by North American values and identities, a large part of how these ‘queens’ identify themselves is based on their local beliefs and principles. In my perspective, the article discussed a good understanding of this specific group of people but may have been bias. In this critical analysis, we will first summarize the article based on the author’s thesis, then it will be compared to the readings in the textbook Cultural Anthropology. Finally, the article will be analyzed critically based on the author and his embodied experiences. Murray’s (2009) article on the Bajan queen’s and their sexual diversity show how there is a difference in the definitions of sexuality and gender in Euro-American culture and Barbadian culture. This argument was supported through Murray’s investigation of the transgender and gay community of Barbados through the point of view of the queen’s themselves. According to the transgender’s, there had always been queen’s in Bajan culture; they even had annual parades specific to the queens. Also, queens were recognized and respected in their society because of how they “carried themselves” and because they portrayed themselves as “fierce”. Besides this fact, it was also noted that attitudes regarding the queens have

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