When comparing the novels Luna and Boy meets Boy, it is important to recognize that they are two novels that strongly support the LGBTQ+ community but also highlight the fact that they were bringing light to different communities. The most important difference is that Luna shows the problems of a transgender person that can often be thrown into the shade. In the novel Boy Meets Boy, David Levithan creates an environment that is a utopia for the homosexual community but does not accurately depict the lives of homosexuals in present day community. From birth, being a homosexual to the protagonist Paul was not out of the ordinary as seen when he states, “I just assumed boy were attracted to other boys” (page 8). There was no disturbance of the real world in the life of Paul. This creates a false representation in the current world because not all members of the LGBTQ+ are accepted to the world and blind to the fact that any relationship that differs from heterosexual relationships is deemed as unnatural. Luna, however, goes into a deeper understanding of the problems that are usually shadowed. In the novel, Regan describes her brother being transgender as, “He likes guys. We both do. That doesn’t make him gay. It makes him as straight as me because inside he’s a girl” (Anne Peters, 122). This is important because even though there is an increase of awareness for the LGBTQ+ movement, there are not as much recognition for groups other than gay and lesbian members. There is a need for novels like Luna because it is relatable and proves to readers that there is an increase in need for gender fluidity. There are limits that remain against transgender because breaking societal norms is already controversial so introducing many sexualities that change one’s body type is extreme to the conservative values that dictate this country today. There is much more need to change America and novels like Boy Meets Boy can show how the world can still remain the same with homosexual relationships or may do the opposite and make it seem that the problem is solved. Novels like Luna show the struggle and may lead to the changes that will normalize all relationships.
Roy: “Like all labels they tell you one thing and one thing only: where does an individual so identified fit in the food chain, in the pecking order?” (45)
In this moment, Kushner utilizes the character of Roy to criticize the close minded American society people live in. Kushner juxtaposes the words “one” and “fit” to reveal the damages of label in people in society. Americans use labels in order to pre-determine the kind of lifestyle on is supposed to live as after being labeled “homosexual” or any other member of a minority group. America obsess over levels in order to “fit” one in a category full of stereotypes and expectations. When one is so specifically labeled as “one thing” a loss of identity occurs because the labels do not always include all aspect of a person. Labels are so extreme that even when one cannot fit into one specific group, there are labels such as “queer” and “gender fluid”. For Roy, who can arguably be named queer because he does not follow definite heterosexual behavior, he cannot live in the comfortably of living as just Roy. Usually there is a society-created correlation between campy men and homosexual men. For example, if one is identifying as homosexual, there is an automatic association to campy behavior when not all homosexual men. There are men who exhibit campy behavior, with their extravagance and showy behavior in their specific way of dressing and etc., but there are many who do not live to that standard. There are also many men who enjoy the same or similar leisure activities that men who are considered to be enjoy, but are not attracted to men. In this chapter, Roy clearly states he is not a homosexual but rather a man that sleeps with men because he notices there is a stigma with identifying as a gay man in which there is more added to the definition then being a man. This addition to the play is a necessary reminder that labels are not essential in life and if the word homosexual is used to describe a person, it should be restricted to the simple fact that the only thing that can be predicted from this term is that a male is attracted to other males.
“She recognised things according to expectation and environment. If you were in a particular place, you expected to see particular things” (Winterson, 45).
In this part of the passage, it is evident that the author repeats the words “expectation” in order to convey a deeper meaning about society. It is evident in the passage already that Jeanette is not what society “expects”. In this particular moment, she is turning in needlework which her teacher does not accept because it is against expectations. Needlework, from the perspective of a close-minded person bred through society, is supposed to be colorful, with a happy motto and done with the love of a woman. Jeanette puts her own perspective on things and is bashed because it is against what is “expected” at this moment. She specifically places this moment in the novel to criticize society’s narrow thinking in that just because someone is revealing them true selves because it is not within the guidelines of societal standards, it is somehow wrong. It is evident that this theme continues throughout the novel because as a Christian raised woman in a small town, Jeanette would be “expected” to spread the Christian faith and follow the rules along with her religion. As it turns out, Jeanette is completely opposite of the preplanned life set up for her since the beginning of her life. This may ultimately lead to feelings of shame and detachment from the world because society fails to consider the variety of personalities and characteristics people possess. There is no room for difference so when it is revealed, no one wants to accept it and learn from it.
“If I cling to circumstances I could feel not responsible. Only she who says she did not choose, is the loser at the end” (Lorde, 151).
In the quote, Lorde addresses the comfort that some women or people in general have in not pursuing and pushing for a better outcome. In order to avoid discomfort, people in society accept the road given to them and blame the world around them for the standards which they live their lives to. There are many barriers in the way for various groups of people and it is always easy to say that the barriers that are systematically placed restricted someone of their full potential but allowing that to occur are more of an atrocity than the failures of society people are engulfed in. People are very cognizant of their worth should make a choice in being better and spreading the option of being better than what society has defined for people as being successful “for a woman” or “for a minority”. Ultimately, there is a choice to do something for the better even if one’s attempts go unnoticed. To allow society to progress a rule out the possible equity feeds into the cycle of people not living their own lives. The predetermined lives of society are mediocre so it is irrational to attempt to conform to them rather than lives beyond their lines. If a failure occurs, even through one’s most firm attempts, that is more fulfilling than to embody the inferior standards of society. One can not blame society for their failures if he or she continues to live an orthodox life of being an American, a woman, a lesbian or etc. No one can ever bash someone for trying and being defeated. There is always a choice to do something and the choice can be in the hands of the ignorant or the hands of a revolutionist.