This blog is dedicated to discussion of the politics and culture of same-sex parented families
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Clip-art: you've come a long way baby ... maybe?
When searching for images with which to decorate this site, I typed the word 'gay' into the Microsoft Office online clipart search engine. Twenty-eight images appeared, seven of which depicted same-sex couples with children. The researcher in me started counting:
• female couples: 4
• male couples: 3
• non-caucasians: 1
• semi-decent artwork: possibly 2 but mostly 0
It should be said that all of these images are reasonably ambiguous. To a heterosexist eye they could easily appear to be 'mother, daughter and granddaughter' or 'Male Friend One congratulating Male Friend Two on his son's soccer prowess'. But they do come up under the category of ‘gay’, so at least someone at Microsoft has decided they must be same-sex parents.
Are clip-art images a good way to measure representation? Most likely NO. But it is interesting nonetheless.
These blog posts have all been written by me, Jennifer Power, and I take full responsibility for their content.
I started this blog to talk about a project I am currently working on, the Work, Love, Play study, which is a longitudinal study looking at the experiences of families parented by same-sex attracted couples and sole parents. The purpose of the blog is partly to keep readers up to date with the study and our findings. But also to be a forum for discussion about political, social and cultural issues concerning same-sex parented families.
The study is being run through the Bouverie Centre at La Trobe University. You can read more about this on our website: www.bouverie.org.au
Keywords: lesbian parents, gay parents, families, same-sex parents, parenting, queer parents, LGBTI