University of Vermont


Robyn Ochs: Beyond Binary!

     Earlier this month, Robyn Ochs visited UVM to get people talking about gender identities and sexual orientations. As a bi-activist, she has focused her work on increasing awareness and understanding of complex identities. Robyn is a national speaker, award-winning activist, has taught LGBTQ courses, and has been published in numerous anthologies.

     Robyn put on an interactive program titled “Beyond Binaries: Identity and Sexuality.” By setting up a physical representation of the gender identity and sexual orientation spectrums, the group was able to visually understand the fluidity of identities. At certain moments, people were close to evenly spread across the entire arch, and a moment later they might be clumped at each edge of the spectrum.  It forced everyone to question the meanings of different labels and their rigidness, as well as reflect on their own identities. This exercise also showed how important it is to understand sexuality as a complex and unstable identity. 

     Thanks to all the participants, planners, and Robyn Ochs for this eye-opening workshop! For more information on Robyn Ochs, visit: