Queer folklore: Coming out stories [abstract]
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For this project, I interviewed many different individuals within the queer community and focused on different aspects of coming out folklore. I researched not only story telling style, structure, content, and meaning, but why the stories are told and in what contexts the stories come about. The main thesis of my project is that coming out stories--not the coming out, but the telling of the stories about coming out--are told to known supportive sources when an individual is searching comfort, support and/or understanding. Following this, those that heard the story will reciprocate with their own, similar coming out stories. This research has implications for other story telling, specifically with oppressed and othered groups. I have found evidence that rape and sexual assault stories are told in much the same way, under similar circumstances. I have also found that these stories are told with a general positive purpose, and are not told nearly as often without so!