A digital magazine on sexuality in the Global South: We are working towards cultivating safe, inclusive, and self-affirming spaces in which all individuals can express themselves without fear, judgement or shame

Anniversary Issue

REVIEW: ‘BOUND TO BE FREE’

‘Bound to be Free’ is a travelling exhibition of exquisitely shot personal and professional photographs, making its way from New Delhi to Bangalore, Kolkata and Chennai this winter. Carefully crafted by members and supporters of the underground Kinky Collective, it is both a visual treat and a powerful step in the direction of building respect…

Interview: Sheema Kermani

Sheema Kermani is a cultural activist, theatre practitioner, theatre director and a known Pakistani exponent of Indian classical dance. She had studied Bharatanatyam under Leela Samson and Odissi under Aloka Panicker during her previous visits to India. In 1979, she founded a women’s organization called Tehrik-e-Niswan. TARSHI: You have chosen a very unconventional and powerful mode of protest in the…
Illustration of a turkish bath, where a group of women are bathing naked

Being Naked in Istanbul: Why Dove’s ‘Real Beauty’ is a Sham

I felt very uncomfortable the first time I saw the Dove ‘beauty sketches’ campaign ad or the ‘most watched ad ever’, last year. My discomfort became more apparent again this year when a stimulating discussion with a friend on a weekend trip turned sour when I was confounded by my inadequate explaining of how regressive…
Illustration of a woman with her kids and a man with kids, joined together by hair and beard

BEYOND THE SIMPLE FORMULAS

‘Woman? It’s simple, say the fanciers of simple formulas: she is a womb, an ovary; she is a female – this word is sufficient to define her.’ -Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex These words were written in 1949. The world has changed the lens with which it views women many times over, mostly because…
Photo of a woman in a pride parade, holding up a small queer pride flag

और जन्म हुआ गज़ल का !

तारशी की ईमैगज़ीन इन प्लेनस्पीक में हम इस महीने ‘बॉडी इमेज’ या शारीरिक छवि पर बात करेंगे। बॉडी इमेज वह है जो व्यक्ति अपने शरीर के बारे में सोचते हैं  - जो इस धारणा (अक्सर समाज द्वारा प्रेरित) पर आधारित है कि उन्हें अपने शरीर के बारे में क्या अच्छा लगता है और क्या नहीं।…
Credit: Pixabay

The Editorial: Anniversary Issue

We are one year old! Yes, In Plainspeak has been publishing articles from around the Global South, especially India and the South and South East Asia region for a year now. In our first anniversary issue and to commemorate Human Rights Day we bring back some articles on sexuality and rights that were published over…
A woman dressed in a black and red dress and holding up a big red umbrella is looking behind. She has long blonde hair and a smile on her face.

PROVIDING SEXUAL SERVICES TO CLIENTS WITH DISABILITY

I’ve been a sex worker for over 20 years. I’m a migrant sex worker based in Sydney, Australia but have travelled for work opportunities both interstate and internationally during that time. The most important thing for sex workers is that our clients are respectful and courteous. It is a mutually consenting activity between two adults.…
poster for the film 'blue is the warmest colour', which shows two young girls facing each other intimately

Reel Review: Blue Is The Warmest Color

There are many ways of looking at Blue is the Warmest Colour, last year’s French release about a love story between two young women that went on to win the highest award at the Cannes Film Festival. We could look at it as a love story, a timely twist on the classic Ali MacGraw-Ryan O’Neal genre-defining…
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