Wise & Young

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Bottom & Gay Black Male culture

For all intensive purposes I have only been gay, meaning that I starting messing with dudes on a physical and allegedly romantic level, since fall of 2002. So to many people I am still a neophyte to the light of homosexuality, if one can or cares to consider it a light per se. But one thing that seems to be pervasive to all aspects of Gay culture especially in that of Black Gay Male culture is the Bottom. For those of you who may be straight, or just ignorant, the Bottom is the male who is penetrated by another man in anal sex. Due to the fact that for a large segment of the population bottoming or being penetrated rather is the one singular characterizing trait that defines all gay men, irregardless of sexual proclivities, and for numerous Black Gay males they embrace, engage, or reject many of the stereotypes that are assumed to be part in parcel with the idea of being a bottom, for these reasons I state that the Bottom is the one singular permeating behavior that dominates Gay Black Male culture.

For many people both in and outside “the Life” being penetrated is what defines being gay. Granted anyone can get penetrated via the anus because we all have one, but the notion that only a man can penetrate another man and for many people they tie this in with jail where the one that is penetrated is the one who considered weak. People even quote bible scriptures which discuss homosexual anal sex as being God’s rejection of homosexuality, but no one points out any scripture where romantic love between two men is wrong. Because of this act above all others is what people tie with being gay it is another reason why the notion of the Bottom or the act thereof is the most dominating force in the Gay Black Male culture. at In life, perception is reality, if you are perceived to be one thing then for many people they put you in that category, whether or not you perceive yourself to be that or not. In the Gay Black Male Community you have men who enjoy being penetrated, and are willing to conform to stereotypical ideals of what are gay male behaviors and mannerisms, such as effeminacy in speech, dress, and overall demeanor as a means of displaying their sexual habits. This is due to the wider community and the Gay Male community accepting that those are penetrated are the “women or the bitch” in the sexual equation, thusly some bottoms are willing to conform to this because they feel that is what they are supposed to do. But on the other side there are Black men who go out of their way to typify the latest ethos of masculinity in an effort not to be labeled as “the bitch” even though they bottom as well. Some may try to build their body up so that it is intimidating to other men, others try to wear the latest in urban clothing and display mannerisms of the like as well, all in an effort not to be labeled as a bottom or being able to be “clocked”.

What I want someone who reads this to take away is that this is in no way an indictment of those who bottom, or anything of that ilk. If anything it is an indictment of how people use the larger US define the smaller us. It is one thing if those on the outside care to describe or put connation upon us and our behaviors but once we accept those and live within their confines in a lifestyle not of their making therein lies the problem. We become subject and create a mental and emotional ghetto that we have the keys to free ourselves but are too scared to do so.

Just my thoughts


  • You make a good point. Too many people put a negative connotation on being a bottom.

    By Blogger Cash S., at 9:01 AM  

  • You always enlighten me....you learn something new everyday.

    By Blogger Honey-Libra, at 10:48 AM  

  • really interesting post...I am sure this would make a great conversation piece...years ago, I thought I can tell who's a bottom just by looking at them...until I moved to ATL...LOL

    By Blogger ProfessorGQ, at 5:10 PM  

  • how people act is certainly not an indication of what sexual behavior they engage in. though i don't think most guys who work out for increased muscle mass do it to intimidate other men. most do it out of a shifting combination of wanting to be physically healthy AND responding to the community's pressure of having the "perfect" body (on which a high premium is placed, regardless of facial attractiveness, job stability, or criminal history).

    By Blogger Karamale, at 3:04 PM  

  • hey brother,

    i hope all is well...
    a line of thought that must be considered is one that evaluates the existence of "alternatives" for subcultures in our society. i mean to say, it is true that every subculture in our society to some degree is engaged in mimicry of the larger more dominant culture. we see this of gay men, lesbians, african americans, etc....

    and many scholars have argued that members of these subcultures have brought upon their own death, by suppressing who they are or refusing to dig deeper for their essence, and not take the easy route and conform to a system of values, lifestyle that is not yours.

    in response to this, i say, does a viable alternative exist for these subcultures... we want want self-determination and unique indentity for our people, but does this exist, and where can it be found...

    By Blogger P. Alonzo Harris Jr., at 7:56 AM  

  • I really enjoy to be a bottom and and sometimes "a bitch" of my men and it does not bother me at all.I feel like a woman when i have sex with men and being submissive push me to take control of sexual intercourse because I am the one who drive my man in the way that i decided to go. He just follows me in my pleasure and desire. The categorization is may be bad but important to choose our sexual preference. I belong to the men who truly love the position of receptive. My pleasure is to satisfy my man in the better way he decide to take me. It is a choice and nothing else.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:51 AM  

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