Hi, I saw the ask about the genderqueer person and was wondering if you could elaborate on androgyny being problematic when depicted as being attractive? I'm having a hard time seeing how that would be a problem unless it was really fetishized. Thanks.
It’s not that androgyny being attractive is an issue specifically. You’re correct in your assessment of fetishization being an issue, but more often than not, what I have observed is that specifically attractive anrdogyny isn’t for everyone, but for small, elfin, usually white or pale individuals.
This stereotype is very alienating and damaging to those who claim and perform androgyny, but are not recognized as such because they don’t fit the attractive expectation. It is similar to the way in which people will deny trans (women especially) individuals their identity when they do not perform/express their gender in the socially expected way.
Androgyny is not inherently more or less attractive than other forms of identity expression, but authors have a tendency of using it as a way to make their protagonist question their sexuality. This leads to the continued fetishization of androgyny as well as a very stereotypical sexuality crisis arc or “character X turned me gay” arc which is tiresome, usually offensive (if not handled carefully), and not how sexuality works.