April 17, 2024

Kylie Jenner: Why Is Her Sexuality Up For Debate?

If you’ve been on TikTok lately, you’ll have likely seen a video of Kylie Jenner cosying up with her best pal Stassie Karanikolaou and looking just a little bit like they’re about to kiss. We’d be surprised if you didn’t see it, as the video has already raked in 3 million likes and over 10,000 comments.

And as you can probably imagine, they’re packed with speculation punctuated with the nails emoji – the classic queer marker on the platform.

“They clearly want to kiss so badly and honestly I also want them to kiss so badly,” writes one TikTok user. “Kylie is clearly gay and can’t come out or something,” comments another. It seems like fans of the Kardashian clan believe – or at least hope – that this video is the soft launch of Kylie Jenner coming out — despite her public heterosexual relationship with rapper Travis Scott.

Over the past few weeks, more videos have surfaced showing the two of them being affectionate towards one another, and thousands of people have analysed the videos (practically frame by frame) and dissected Kardashian lore to decide whether the two women are just touchy-feely friends or if Kylie is into women.

This isn’t the first time a celebrity has been the subject of speculation about sexuality. From Madonna and Britney being questioned over their kiss at the VMAs in 2003, to Miley Cyrus presumed to be gay before she came out in 2013 because of a short haircut, all the way to Billie Eilish being questioned over her Lost Cause music video, which was a celebration of female-friendship, women have been interrogated over their sexuality for decades. In fact, Kylie’s own sister Kendall Jenner has also been the subject of queer suspicion over the last few years.

If women so much as hug another woman for a second too long, theories about their sexuality start to fly, and it can turn sour very quickly.

Many of the comments surrounding Kylie’s videos centre on how important a queer Kardashian would be to the LGBTQ community, with comments like “I mean, with all those sisters, at least one is going to be queer” and “homophobia would basically end if a Kardashian was gay. ” This speculation, and the yearning undertones that come with it, say a lot about how badly many queer people desire representation.

This can be seen in the queerbaiting discourse that has weaved in and out of trending topics on social media and headlines for years now. Whether it’s Billie Eilish featuring a pretty queer-looking sleepover in her music video or Harry Styles painting his nails and sporting a dress, fans have long speculated over the apparent queerness of celebrities who are either straight, haven’t come out or are simply unsure – going as far as to criticise them and boycott their work if they don’t commit to having a queer identity, and offering representation to queer people in turn.

But as important as queer representation is, we’re not entitled to receive it from whomever we like. And other than a few almost-kisses and prolonged touching, Jenner (neither Styles nor Eilish) hasn’t really done anything to suggest she’s on her way to coming out.

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