Author Talks on Feminism
Trujilo Says Mexican-American Lesbians Are at Venguard
Facing great adversity, Mexican-American lesbians have been the vanguard of feminism and progressivism, author and lecturer Carla Trujillo told a group of about 25 students in Emerson Hall last night.
"We, was Chicana lesbians, have been instrumental in realigning the women's movement," said Trujillo, who is author of Chicana Lesbians: The girls Our Mothers Warned Us About.
Trujillo, who visited the campus as part of BGLAD week activities, is a lecturer on ethnic studies at the University of California at Berkelay and an editor of Outlook magazine.
Trujillo said many of the obstacles Chicana lesbians face come form within their own culture. "Women were once used as property," Trujillo said, "and although the laws have changed, ideologically, little has."
Trujillo said Chicana lesbians face huge obstacles as a result of the dearth of role models in history.
"I was born attracted to women and I thought I would turn into a boy during puberty," Trujillo said, explaining, "There was no references for me to fall into."
Trujillo said Mexican-American lesbians are often forced into "passivity and repression" by social and traditional family values.
"We learn to hate our bodies [and are expected to be] 'good girls," Trujillo said. "We're all taught to vie for a man's attention," she added.
Though Trujillo said she believes the Catholic church also represses homosexuality, many Chicana lesbians do not necessarily reject community and religion.
Citing herself as a representatives of "people [creating] their own realities," Trujillo said, "I have my own altar at home. I do my own thing."
She said Chicana lesbians can ease their feeling of alienation from society by creating their own familias, using artificial insemination as a way to bear children.
Trujillo also said opportunities for Chicana lesbian interaction are growing.
"We are seeing a lot of things happen," she said, citing the example of a state-wide conference in Colorado on Chicana sexuality. "[This] gives me hope that our society will get better."