3 LGBTQ/Sexuality Themes in Blue is the Warmest Color

blue is the warmest color GBP featured image
Cover of the graphic novel

Blue is the Warmest Color (I’ll be abbreviating this as BITWC), written and illustrated by Julie Maroh (she’s a double threat!) is a powerfully moving story that follows a young female named Clementine (Honestly…this name is unique as hell…haha) through the exploration of her complex sexuality. It delves into how her sexuality affects her love life with men and women, her friendships, relationship with her parents and ultimately her mental health. WATCH MY YOUTUBE VIDEO ABOUT THIS HERE!!! Or keep reading…!

julie-maroh
Julie Maroh [Source of pic here]

 

So, who’s Julie Maroh? Here are some fun facts:

  • She is from northern France [1]
  • She’s currently in her 30s [2]
  • She is a lesbian [3]
  • She began drawing at the age of 6 (um…woah!! I was probably still finger painting hideous images for my parents) [1]
  • She earned a degree in comic art from the Institute Saint-Luc in Brussels (that’s in Belgium by the way!) [1]
  • She also earned a degree in lithography and engraving from the Royal Academy of Arts in Brussels. [1]
  • She still lives in Brussels. [1]
  • Her most notable work is BITWC, which later inspired a film with the same title (more on the later in this post) [1]

Also, lets learn some French…

Blue is the Warmest Color is “Le bleu est une couleur chaude” in French. The French language is so beautiful and….sexy. Honestly a French person could come up to me and say literally anything and I’ll be ready to marry them! YES! YES! I do!

Moving along though….

BITWC is a graphic novel (also known as a “comic book” but I like being fancy) and that’s one the reason why I think it’s fascinating. You can actually see the emotions of the characters and you can watch the characters life play out in front of you. You may be thinking…well that just sounds like a movie! It does, but with a comic you can imagine what the characters sound like, what the character’s breathing or crying sounds like. It’s really interesting because you’re working with the illustrator’s depictions of the characters, but you can immerse yourself within it because you have to fill in the missing pieces.

So, why am I talking about this?

This story is really special to me because I’m still currently exploring my sexuality so it really hit home for me. Also, I think it’s incredibly important to have open discussions about sexuality so people can learn to understand and hopefully accept or at the very least respect one another. Sexuality is very complex and it’s warms my heart that people are more open about it and people are actually having conversations about it. More can still be done and I’d LOVE to engage in more discussions here!!! This story did a wonderful job depicting the beauty and hardships that can come with a lesbian relationship.

Here’s why I feel like I’ve learned from reading this graphic novel…

1. Sexuality is Fluid

I have never believed that people can actually choose whom they are attracted to or whom they fall in love with. I believe that people can only choose if they want to accept for deny their love for another person. No one can hide from his or her true selves, you can ignore it, but it will still exist. I don’t want to go into too much detail about how Clementine embodies this theme because I don’t want to ruin it for you Geeky Beauts!

2. Labels are Restrictive

kinsey-scale
This is my own version of the Kinsey Scale that I created. The Kinsey Scale is used to determine someone’s sexual orientation. There are actually even more sexual orientations! Way more actually!

I find labels very restrictive and I choose not to use any labels, not because I’m afraid to, but because I don’t think I need to. I like who I like and I shag who I shag! I understand that people find solace in using a label and if people like them, then that’s his or her choice, but I don’t think people should have to be placed in a box that they don’t feel completely suits them.

3. People will accept you despite your sexuality or they will ostracize you for it

 This story TRULY delves into the themes of acceptance and rejection. It breaks my heart and really really REALLY pisses me off when people judge others for whom they’ve decided to love or take home for a night. No one should feel that they aren’t good enough or that they aren’t special. Everyone won’t like you, but everyone should respect you and if someone finds it sooooo damn difficult to be nice to you, then they should just hit the bricks and move on. I think that people can choose to hate or to love, but people should remember that hate earns you nothing, but love can earn you everything.

So, in short…

People can only be who they are. People in their truest and most raw state is the most beautiful and the most comfortable.

If any of you Geeky Beauts have embarked on or have completed a similar journey, I truly commend you! You’re freaking awesome!! For anyone, who’s afraid to, I hope you can begin to find yourself and if you need advice, support, or an ear then don’t hesitate to comment or send me a private message on my contact page!!

Let me know what you thought about this article and if you agree or disagree with anything I’ve said. I’d love to hear your opinions!

xo Ayana

References

  1. Maroh, Julie. Blue Is the Warmest Color. Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp, 2013. Print. **You can buy the comic here****
  2. “Julie Maroh.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 22 Jan. 2017.
  3. “Julie Maroh on Creating “Blue Is the Warmest Color”.” AfterEllen. N.p., 22 Oct. 2013. Web. 22 Jan. 2017.

 

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