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Digital Subscriptions > DIVA Magazine > December 2016 > SPEAKING Queerly



MJ Barker is a British activist-academic, counsellor and psychologist who was voted 53 on DIVA’s Power List 2016 for their work in promoting greater understanding and acceptance of bi and non-binary identities. They were recently invited to speak in an advisory capacity at the White House during President Obama’s Bisexual Awareness Week.

DIVA: Your new book is a delight and you’ve managed to make a complex academic and political term accessible. What inspired you to create Queer: A Graphic History with artist Julia Scheele?

MJ BARKER: I was asked to write a book on queer theory for part of Icon books’ Introducing... series of comic guides. Those books basically got me through my own undergraduate and postgraduate years but I also wondered: “Can I do this? I’m not a proper queer theorist.” I decided that “not a proper queer theorist” was probably the best person to write this book because it is such a complex subject and so hard to write about accessibly. Hopefully I could explain things in an easy enough way because I could pull out the bits that seemed most useful to me.

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We’re thrilled to have YouTube stars Rose and Rosie on our cover once again! Find out what they’ve been up to since we last spoke and enjoy digital extras including an exclusive behind the scenes video from our cover shoot and bonus images. Also in this issue… Bad Girls: Roxy Bourdillon meets the cast of the ITV drama and finds out why we still hold a candle for Larkhall 10 years on Magda Szubanski: Why we love the Kath and Kim star Comedian Jayde Adams: “DIVA outed me to my family” Vicky Beeching on making the Yuletide gay Heather Peace: Why it’s cool to be kind Phyll Opoku-Gyimah asks “Where’s our humanity?” Holidays are coming: Yule love our Christmas gift guide! PLUS: Travel, fashion, family and much, much more!
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