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The Sorority “Brother” Blues

Ok so…meet Chanise Devin Alston-Smith. In spring 2008, Devin started his intake process with the George Washington University chapter of the Zeta Phi Beta sorority. Before we go on, do note that Chanise’s preferred name is Devin and prefers to go by the male pronoun “he”. Anyway, it takes some by surprise but all is fair in love and sex during college so he crosses as a Zeta with the line-given name ” The Liberator”. And that is just the beginning.

Devin is good, he’s going to school, doing his transgendered type thing and trying to be the best Zeta he can and match everything in his closet to blue & white. But he’s having a hard time fitting in, after all he is attempting to identify and live as a male in the female focused environment that a sorority provides. Eventually, names get called, feelings get hurt and somehow Beyoncé gets involved and the saga ends with Devin destroying all of his Zeta belongings and delivering them in a trash bag to his sisters.

College is real, but damn if this isn’t something. So do you think that Devin played himself when he joined a female sorority? Or did Zeta drop-the-ball after they welcomed him in the fold? On a larger level, where exactly do gay, lesbian and trangendered people fall in the world of the greek social community? Amanda Hess at the Washington City Paper tries to break some of it down but skims over the cultural significance that is relevant to this story. Since we are learning that sexuality is becoming a bendable sliding scale (seen the L Word lately?- no, i’m still boycotting from that first episode this season…Steels) is it just that historically black fraternities and sororities may be more traditional when it comes to gender and that should have been considered? My head hurts, let’s talk it out! Big thanks to RM for the link!

Menace to Sorority

Last 5 posts by Shannon Washington