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The ‘Kink at Pride’ Discourse Needs to Retire

Kink, Lawson underlines, can be viewed as an exploration of sexuality outside of mainstream structures and “respectable” norms. “The BDSM or kinky communities recentre sex around pleasure, not reproduction. It’s no coincidence that the leather scene is so closely associated with radical, transgressive queerness – the gay leather aesthetic emerges post-World War II in America and it’s been part of queer culture ever since. That kinky, leather aesthetic has been part of queer politics and queer protest since the 1960s – you see it in pictures of early Prides and in the radical protests of the ACT UP movement.”