Homosexuality, Lesbianism and Bisexuality in Gor… we see it often in SL Gor, but is it truly a part of the Gorean society depicted by John Norman in his novels??
John Norman wrote the first of the Gor novels in the early 1960’s. At this time over a large part of the Western World homosexuality was considered shameful and not spoken of.
Although there are those that will argue the panther girls were lesbians, this was not the case. John Norman hinted the possibility bisexuality among the panther girls, but there was never anything that we read in which the panther girls took each other for lovers. The dances under the moon aluded to sexual frenzy, but not the final culmination. On the other hand, it was quite prominent in the books of the panther girls capturing men and raping them, and their starvation for the touch of men and how they made hot slaves. This blows away true lesbianism although it leaves bisexuality still a possibility.
Still the possibility of homosexuality would contradict panther girls as a whole: Each and any of them once captured was very fast to enjoy what men had to offer. Homosexuality amongst women in general would contradict the entire nature of sexuality on Gor. I think the only homosexuals that were displayed in short passages were men.
I think Norman portrayed this in his homosexual couple, Appanius and his slave Milo. They were not shunned or cast out of society. They were not pointed at or ridiculed. They simply were. People who were naturally homosexual and living their lives. They were not considered wrong… just different. They were indeed, Gorean.
Examples from the novels
“Milo was important in the house,” I said. “He is famous. He is of great value to Appanius.”
“Certainly, Master,” she said.
“It would make sense then,” I said, “to suppose that a girl would be sent to him, at least once in a while.”
“Perhaps, Master,” she said.
“So much is done even for quarry slaves,” I said.
“Yes, Master,” she said.
“But as far as you know this was never done?”
“Not as far as I know,” she said.
“And if it had been done,” I said, “it is my speculation that you would have heard of it, such gossip flowing quickly through the corridors of such a house.”
“I suppose so,” she said.
“If Milo had requested a girl, do you think he would have received one?”
“I would suppose so,” she said, puzzled.
“Perhaps he did not request one,” I said.
“Master?” she asked.
“Possible Milo does not find women attractive,” I said.
“Master?” she asked.
“Nothing,” I said.—Magicians of Gor, page 310 and 313 – 314
Then there’s below..
“Apponius and Milo must be on intimate terms,” I said.
“Yes,” she said. “The master treats him as though he might be a free man. They discuss matters of business and the theater. Even in the great hall, at the common suppers, he has Milo above the salt and at his right hand.”—Magicians of Gor, page 310
While the following quote confirms that Milo’s master indeed was homosexual and in love with Milo, Milo himself was not. By the reaction of Marcus, it appears that homosexual love was something that was not publicly known.
“My Milo, my Milo!” wept Appanius, looking down at the much-beaten slave. “The most beautiful slave in Ar! My beloved slave! My beloved Milo!”
“He has betrayed you,” said one of the retainers.
“How could you do it?” asked Appanius. “Have I not been good to you? Have I not been kind? Have you wanted for anything? Have I not given you everything?”
The slave kept his head down. I think he was sick, and I did not much blame him. He had taken a fearful beating. His back and shoulders were covered with welts. I did not think that anything had been broken. I wondered if he had ever been beaten before. Perhaps not. I myself have doubtless been responsible for a few of those blows, but then they had been appropriately administered. His behavior, after all, had contained errors.
“He is an ungrateful slave,” said another of the retainers.
“Send him to the fields,” said one of the retainers.
“Sell him,” said another.
“Make him an example to others,” said the first retainer.
“We can fine you a better, Appanius,” said another.
“One even more beautiful,” said one.
“And one with appropriate dispositions,” said another.
“And he, too, if you wish, can be trained as an actor and performer,” said another.
Marcus looked at me, puzzled. He did not really follow this conversation. I did not react to his look.
“What shall I do with him?” asked Appanius.
“Let all your slaves learn that they are your slaves,” said one of the retainers.
“Speak clearly,” said Appanius.
“Rid yourself of him,” whispered the fellow.
“Yes,” said another.
Appanius looked down at the chained slave.
I now had some understanding of the jealousy of the retainers for the slave. The slave had doubtless enjoyed too much power in the house, too much favor with the master. They were eager to bring him down.
“How?” asked Appanius.
“He has been unfaithful to you,” said a retainer.
“He had made a fool of you, with a woman,” said another.
This remark seemed to have its effect with Appanius.
“If this gets out, you will be a laughing stock in Ar,” said another.
I doubted this. It is natural enough for a male slave to have an eye for female slaves, and it is not unusual for a female slave to occasionally, say, find herself taken advantage of by such a fellow. — Magicians of Gor, pages 426-427.