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Radical Faeries are a loosely affiliated international group of mostly gay men and mostlycounterculturepagans. The Faeries began in California, and have spread throughout the world over the past several decades, in tandem with the larger gay rights movement. The group challenges the commercialisation and patriarchal gay life while celebrating pagan constructs and rituals and adapting rural living and environmentally sustainable concepts to moderntechnologies as part of their creative expression.
Members embody the fae or, in simplified terms feminized ideals in gay men while, also, being fiercely independent, anti-establishment and community-focused. The group offers a fascinating look into counter-cultural survival within the gay community which is itself a minority. In other words, the group is considered a beloved fringe group of a larger fringe group of society
Radical Faeries vary greatly from region to region and often commune at large gatherings timed with the seasons and solar system — especially the Equinox and Solstice.
Started in 1979 by Harry Hay, his long-time partner John Burnside, Don Kilhefner, and Mitch Walker. A central tenet of the group is that there is no single definition of faerie — Faerie is a self-assumed identity.
The Faeries were a contributing influence to John Cameron Mitchell’s film Shortbus.
The Radical Faerie movement started in the United States among gay men during the 1970s sexual revolution. Radical Faerie communities are generally inspired by aboriginal or native, traditional spiritualities, especially those that incorporate queer sensibilities. The Radical Faeries use heart circle, communal living, consensus decision-making, dance, drag, pagan ritual, drumming, sex, magic, and intimacy to examine what it means to be a whole human who is also a queer person. In the beginning, the movement was open exclusively to gay men, though most communities are now open to all genders andsexual orientations. Radical Faerie communities practice queer-themed spirituality associated with radical politics, paganism or neo-paganism, feminism, gender liberation, and may encompass any and all religions or a lack of them.
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