We may never touch queerness, but we can feel it as the warm illumination of a horizon imbued with potentiality…an ideality that can be distilled from the past and used to imagine a future. The future is queerness’ domain. Queerness is a structuring and educated mode of desiring that allows us to see the future beyond the quagmire of the present. The here and now is a prison house. We must strive, in the face of the here and now’s totalizing rendering of reality, to think and feel a then and there. Some will say that all we have are the pleasures of the moment, but we must never settle for that minimal transport; we must dream and enact new and better pleasures, other ways of being in the world, and ultimately new worlds … Queerness is essentially about the rejection of a here and now and an insistence on potentiality or concrete possibility for another world.
Sex, then, is something that is fashioned, negotiated, practiced, and enacted. The apparent simplicity of the question “is this a girl or a boy?” conceals the fact that to ask the question, one must already know what boys and girls are.

INTERVIEWER: The visual portraits in Femmes of Power are potentially problematic. Do you think such works can attach too high an importance to surface appearance?

DLGV: A consequence of the visual propaganda we have all been subjected to is that we automatically ‘read’ images of feminine women in a particular way and make assumptions about her gender, sexuality and availability for cultural consumption.

I don’t believe that words alone can provide an alternative way of visualizing what it means to be female, femme or feminine in today’s world.

UD: Yes, and it’s also important to know that this is a rare book because it gives equal weight to image and text – and very few publishers are willing to produce such books!

That said, if you read the text, you will learn that the ways that our subjects queer femininity is about a lot more than aesthetics or visuals – it is about who it is done for – that is, about desire and relationships, the activist and creative work that they do, and so on.

So what does it mean that a femme identified female born woman gets mistaken for a drag queen? That overdoing femininity makes you appear more masculine or wearing masculine clothing makes you appear more feminine? If a trans-woman like Josephine finds a model for femininity in A Femme’s Guide to The Universe and a femme learns femininity from drag queens who in turn are often seen as imitating ‘real women’? Who is really imitating who?
[Zoe] was forced to relate to the outside world through the structural inequalities of a racially ordered society, which cemented her group membership around Blackness. It was not until much later that she came to understand how her same-sex desires played a role in how she fit into the world…Sexuality and gender presentation together served to create a social identity for her as a lesbian. So both Zoe’s individual and her collective identities have race at their core: her identity is structural as well as relational.
I learned thickly about [my interlocuter/informant Juliette] and my own construction of sexuality.
transsuccess:

Ignacio Rivera
Prefers the gender-neutral pronoun “they,” has spoken at home and abroad on such topics as racism, sexism, homo/transphobia, transgender issues, anti-oppression, anti-violence, multi-issue organizing and more. In addition to lectures and keynotes, their work manifests itself through skits, one-person shows, poetry, spoken word performance, workshops, readings and experimental film.
Ignacio is the founder of Poly Patao Productions. P3 is dedicated to producing sex-positive workshops, performance pieces, films, play parties, panel discussions, social/political groups and educational opportunities that are specially geared toward queer women, transgender, multi-gender, gender-queer, gender non-conforming and gender variant people of color.  They also helped found the the Queers for Economic Justice, a progressive non-profit organization committed to promoting economic justice in a context of sexual and gender liberation, as one of the board members.

transsuccess:

Ignacio Rivera

Prefers the gender-neutral pronoun “they,” has spoken at home and abroad on such topics as racism, sexism, homo/transphobia, transgender issues, anti-oppression, anti-violence, multi-issue organizing and more. In addition to lectures and keynotes, their work manifests itself through skits, one-person shows, poetry, spoken word performance, workshops, readings and experimental film.

Ignacio is the founder of Poly Patao Productions. P3 is dedicated to producing sex-positive workshops, performance pieces, films, play parties, panel discussions, social/political groups and educational opportunities that are specially geared toward queer women, transgender, multi-gender, gender-queer, gender non-conforming and gender variant people of color.

They also helped found the the Queers for Economic Justice, a progressive non-profit organization committed to promoting economic justice in a context of sexual and gender liberation, as one of the board members.

An important difference between gay men and dees is that dees are only dees in their relation to a tom. The masculine female gives the dee her identity, whereas gay men take pains to distinguish their community and identities from kathoey identity. Gay men form sexual identities based on their mutual attraction to other men…Both mainstream commentators and toms and dees themselves assert that dees are looking for friendship, companionship, and caring from toms. In my research I rarely found a dee who would link sexual desire with her deeness.
Tolerance denotes a preparedness to endure, put up with, or permit to exist, but does not necessarily imply the lack of criticism of the favorable or approving attitude connoted by acceptance. It is possible to tolerate something even while considering it inappropriate, misdirected, or wrong.
Toms share with kathoeys, transgendered/transsexual males, a discourse of “suffering” from an inability to achieve true maleness or femaleness. Thai gay men have also appropriated this discourse of suffering to describe their difficulties in finding social acceptance and satisfying relationships.
Jackson (1999b, 229) makes the useful distinction
between “tolerance” and “acceptance” of homosexuality in the Thai context: “Tolerance denotes a preparedness to endure, put up with, or permit to exist, but does not necessarily imply the lack of criticism or the favorable or approving attitude connoted by acceptance. It is possible to tolerate something even while considering it inappropriate, misdirected, or wrong.”
[The] popularity of using derivations of English for new identities, found frequently throughout the world, does not mean that the new term carries the same meaning as the original English word.

CBS Documentary - The Homosexuals (1967) (by TheLoverOfMovies)

"While virginity and monogamy are prized, the women learn to brave judgments about promiscuity and to calculate their bodies, services, and attentions in terms of cash. In these ways, the workers absorb the lessons that their racial, economic, and gender subordination (or their performance as subordinates) can provide a source of income and also that they can contract their erotic and affectional intimacy according to specific amounts of time and money."

Wilson, Ara. The Intimate Economies of Bangkok: Tomboys, Tycoons and Avon Ladies in the Global City. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004. pp 90.