Winner of the John Boswell Prize from the American Historical Association 2018
Winner of the William Sanders Scarborough Prize from the Modern Language Association 2018
Winner of an American Library Association Stonewall Honor 2018
Winner of Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Nonfiction 2018
Winner of the Sylvia Rivera Award in Transgender Studies from the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies
The story of Christine Jorgensen, America’s first prominent transsexual, famously narrated trans embodiment in the postwar era. Her celebrity, however, has obscured other mid-century trans narratives—ones lived by African Americans such as Lucy Hicks Anderson and James McHarris. Their erasure from trans history masks the profound ways race has figured prominently in the construction and representation of transgender subjects. In Black on Both Sides, C. Riley Snorton identifies multiple intersections between blackness and transness from the mid-nineteenth century to present-day anti-black and anti-trans legislation and violence.
Drawing on a deep and varied archive of materials—early sexological texts, fugitive slave narratives, Afro-modernist literature, sensationalist journalism, Hollywood films—Snorton attends to how slavery and the production of racialized gender provided the foundations for an understanding of gender as mutable. In tracing the twinned genealogies of blackness and transness, Snorton follows multiple trajectories, from the medical experiments conducted on enslaved black women by J. Marion Sims, the “father of American gynecology,” to the negation of blackness that makes transnormativity possible.
Revealing instances of personal sovereignty among blacks living in the antebellum North that were mapped in terms of “cross dressing” and canonical black literary works that express black men’s access to the “female within,” Black on Both Sides concludes with a reading of the fate of Phillip DeVine, who was murdered alongside Brandon Teena in 1993, a fact omitted from the film Boys Don’t Cry out of narrative convenience. Reconstructing these theoretical and historical trajectories furthers our imaginative capacities to conceive more livable black and trans worlds.
A history of Argentina that examines how trans bodies were understood, policed, and shaped in a country that banned medically assisted gender affirmation practices and punished trans lives.
As a trans history of Argentina, a country that banned medically assisted gender affirmation practices and punished trans lives, A Body of One’s Own places the histories of trans bodies at the core of modern Argentinian history. Patricio Simonetto documents the lives of people who crossed the boundaries of gender from the early twentieth century to the present. Based on extensive archival research in public and community-based archives, this book explores the mainstream medical and media portrayals of trans or travesti people, the state policing of gender embodiment, the experiences of those transgressing the boundaries of gender, and the development of homemade technologies from prosthetics to the self-injection of silicone. A Body of One's Own explores how trans activists' challenges to the exclusionary effects of Argentina’s legal, cultural, social, and political cisgender order led to the passage of the Gender Identity Law in 2012. Analyzing the decisive yet overlooked impact of gender transformation in the formation of the nation-state, gender-belonging, and citizenship, this book ultimately shows that supposedly abstract struggles to define the shifting notions of "sex," citizenship, and nationhood are embodied material experiences.
Honorable Mention for the National Women’s Studies Association's 2021 Gloria E. Anzaldúa Book Prize
2021 Finalist Best LGBTQ+ Themed Book, International Latino Book Awards
2022 John Leo & Dana Heller Award for Best Single Work, Anthology, Multi-Authored, or Edited Book in LGBTQ Studies, Popular Culture Association
The Alan Bray Memorial Book Prize, GL/Q Caucus, Modern Language Association (MLA)
2022 AAHHE Book of the Year Award, American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education
Within queer, transgender, and Latinx and Chicanx cultural politics, brown transgender narratives are frequently silenced and erased. Brown trans subjects are treated as deceptive, unnatural, nonexistent, or impossible, their bodies, lives, and material circumstances represented through tropes and used as metaphors. Restoring personhood and agency to these subjects, Francisco J. Galarte advances “brown trans figuration” as a theoretical framework to describe how transness and brownness coexist within the larger queer, trans, and Latinx historical experiences.
Brown Trans Figurations presents a collection of representations that reveal the repression of brown trans narratives and make that repression visible and palpable. Galarte examines the violent deaths of two transgender Latinas and the corresponding narratives that emerged about their lives, analyzes the invisibility of brown transmasculinity in Chicana feminist works, and explores how issues such as transgender politics can be imagined as part of Chicanx and Latinx political movements. This book considers the contexts in which brown trans narratives appear, how they circulate, and how they are reproduced in politics, sexual cultures, and racialized economies.
Sara L. McKinnon exposes racialized rhetorics of violence in politics and charts the development of gender as a category in American asylum law. Starting with the late 1980s, when gender-based requests first emerged in case law, McKinnon analyzes gender- and sexuality-related cases against the backdrop of national and transnational politics. Her focus falls on cases as diverse as Guatemalan and Salvadoran women sexually abused during the Dirty Wars and transgender asylum seekers from around the world fleeing brutally violent situations. She reviews the claims, evidence, testimony, and message strategies that unfolded in these legal arguments and decisions, and illuminates how legal decisions turned gender into a political construct vulnerable to American national and global interests. She also explores myriad related aspects of the process, including how subjects are racialized and the effects of that racialization, and the consequences of policies that position gender as a signifier for women via normative assumptions about sex and heterosexuality.
Wide-ranging and rich with human detail, Gendered Asylum uses feminist, immigration, and legal studies to engage one of the hotly debated issues of our time.
Finalist, 2015 Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Drama
Discharged from the Marines under suspicious circumstances, Isaac comes home from the wars, only to find the life he remembers upended. Isaac’s father, who once ruled the family with an iron fist, has had a debilitating stroke; his younger sister, Maxine, is now his brother, Max; and their mother, Paige, is committed to revolution at any cost. Determined to be free of any responsibility toward her formerly abusive husband—or the home he created—Paige fervently believes she can lead the way to a "new world order." Hir, Taylor Mac’s subversive comedy, leaves many of our so-called normative and progressive ideas about gender, families, the middle class—and cleaning—in hilarious and ultimately tragic disarray.
Valentine argues that “transgender” has been adopted so rapidly in the contemporary United States because it clarifies a model of gender and sexuality that has been gaining traction within feminism, psychiatry, and mainstream gay and lesbian politics since the 1970s: a paradigm in which gender and sexuality are distinct arenas of human experience. This distinction and the identity categories based on it erase the experiences of some gender-variant people—particularly poor persons of color—who conceive of gender and sexuality in other terms. While recognizing the important advances transgender has facilitated, Valentine argues that a broad vision of social justice must include, simultaneously, an attentiveness to the politics of language and a recognition of how social theoretical models and broader political economies are embedded in the day-to-day politics of identity.
The fact that men and women continue to receive unequal treatment at work is a point of contention among politicians, the media, and scholars. Common explanations for this disparity range from biological differences between the sexes to the conscious and unconscious biases that guide hiring and promotion decisions. Just One of the Guys? sheds new light on this phenomenon by analyzing the unique experiences of transgender men—people designated female at birth whose gender identity is male—on the job.
Kristen Schilt draws on in-depth interviews and observational data to show that while individual transmen have varied experiences, overall their stories are a testament to systemic gender inequality. The reactions of coworkers and employers to transmen, Schilt demonstrates, reveal the ways assumptions about innate differences between men and women serve as justification for discrimination. She finds that some transmen gain acceptance—and even privileges—by becoming “just one of the guys,” that some are coerced into working as women or marginalized for being openly transgender, and that other forms of appearance-based discrimination also influence their opportunities. Showcasing the voices of a frequently overlooked group, Just One of the Guys? lays bare the social processes that foster forms of inequality that affect us all.
First published in 1998, Q & A: Queer in Asian America, edited by David L. Eng and Alice Y. Hom, became a canonical work in Asian American studies and queer studies. This new edition of Q & A is neither a sequel nor an update, but an entirely new work borne out of the progressive political and cultural advances of the queer experiences of Asian North American communities.
The artists, activists, community organizers, creative writers, poets, scholars, and visual artists that contribute to this exciting new volume make visible the complicated intertwining of sexuality with race, class, gender, and ethnicity. Sections address activism, radicalism, and social justice; transformations in the meaning of Asian-ness and queerness in various mass media issues of queerness in relation to settler colonialism and diaspora; and issues of bodies, health, disability, gender transitions, death, healing, and resilience.
The visual art, autobiographical writings, poetry, scholarly essays, meditations, and analyses of histories and popular culture in the new Q & Agesture to enduring everyday racial-gender-sexual experiences of mis-recognition, micro-aggressions, loss, and trauma when racialized Asian bodies are questioned, pathologized, marginalized, or violated. This anthology seeks to expand the idea of Asian and American in LGBTQ studies.
Contributors: Marsha Aizumi, Kimberly Alidio, Paul Michael (Mike) Leonardo Atienza, Long T. Bui, John Paul (JP) Catungal, Ching-In Chen, Jih-Fei Cheng, Kim Compoc, Sony Coráñez Bolton, D’Lo, Patti Duncan, Chris A. Eng, May Farrales, Joyce Gabiola, C. Winter Han, Douglas S. Ishii, traci kato-kiriyama, Jennifer Lynn Kelly, Mimi Khúc, Anthony Yooshin Kim, Việt Lê, Danni Lin, Glenn D. Magpantay, Leslie Mah, Casey Mecija, Maiana Minahal, Sung Won Park, Thea Quiray Tagle, Emily Raymundo, Vanita Reddy, Eric Estuar Reyes, Margaret Rhee, Thomas Xavier Sarmiento, Pahole Sookkasikon, Amy Sueyoshi, Karen Tongson, Kim Tran, Kay Ulanday Barrett, Reid Uratani, Eric C. Wat, Sasha Wijeyeratne, Syd Yang, Xine Yao, and the editors
While medical identification and treatment of gender dysphoria have existed for decades, the development of transgender as a “collective political identity” is a recent construct. Over the past twenty-five years, the transgender movement has gained statutory nondiscrimination protections at the state and local levels, hate crimes protections in a number of states, inclusion in a federal law against hate crimes, legal victories in the courts, and increasingly favorable policies in bureaucracies at all levels. It has achieved these victories despite the relatively small number of trans people and despite the widespread discrimination, poverty, and violence experienced by many in the transgender community. This is a remarkable achievement in a political system where public policy often favors those with important resources that the transgender community lacks: access, money, and voters. The Remarkable Rise of Transgender Rights explains the growth of the transgender rights movement despite its marginalized status within the current political opportunity structure.
Applying the complexities of literacy development and personal ethos to the teaching of composition, Zan Meyer Goncalves challenges writing teachers to consider ethos as a series of identity performances shaped by the often-inequitable social contexts of their classrooms and communities. Using the rhetorical experiences of students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender, she proposes a new way of thinking about ethos that addresses the challenges of social justice, identity, and transfer issues in the classroom.
Goncalves offers an innovative approach to teaching identity performance theory bound by social contexts. She applies this new approach to theories of specificity and intersectionality, illustrating how teachers can help students redefine the relationship between their social identities and their writing. She also addresses bringing social activism and identity politics into the classroom, helping writers make transfers across rhetorical contexts and linking students' interests to public conversations.
Theoretical and practical, Sexuality and the Politics of Ethos in the Writing Classroom provides teachers of first-year and advanced composition studies with useful, detailed assignments based in specific identity performance. Goncalves offers techniques to subvert oppressive language practices, while encouraging students to recognize themselves as writers, citizens, and active participants in their own educations and communities.
How the “bad feelings” of trans experience inform trans survival and flourishing
Some days—or weeks, or months, or even years—being trans feels bad. Yet as Hil Malatino points out, there is little space for trans people to think through, let alone speak of, these bad feelings. Negative emotions are suspect because they unsettle narratives of acceptance or reinforce virulently phobic framings of trans as inauthentic and threatening.
In Side Affects, Malatino opens a new conversation about trans experience that acknowledges the reality of feeling fatigue, envy, burnout, numbness, and rage amid the ongoing onslaught of casual and structural transphobia in order to map the intricate emotional terrain of trans survival. Trans structures of feeling are frequently coded as negative on both sides of transition. Before transition, narratives are framed in terms of childhood trauma and being in the “wrong body.” Posttransition, trans individuals—especially trans people of color—are subject to unrelenting transantagonism. Yet trans individuals are discouraged from displaying or admitting to despondency or despair.
By moving these unloved feelings to the center of trans experience, Side Affects proposes an affective trans commons that exists outside political debates about inclusion. Acknowledging such powerful and elided feelings as anger and exhaustion, Malatino contends, is critical to motivating justice-oriented advocacy and organizing—and recalibrating new possibilities for survival and well-being.
A call for “trans literacy” within biblical scholarship
In this volume Hornsby and Guest introduce readers to terms for the various identities of trans people and how the Bible can be an affirmation of those deemed sexually other by communities. This book offers readings of well known (e.g., Gen 1; Revelation) and not so well known (2 Sam 6; Jer 38) narratives to illustrate that the Bible has been translated and interpreted with a bias that makes heterosexuality and a two sex, two gender system natural, and thus divinely ordained. The authors present examples that show gender was never a binary, and in the Bible gender and sex are always dynamic categories that do, and must, transition.
Translocas focuses on drag and transgender performance and activism in Puerto Rico and its diaspora. Arguing for its political potential, Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes explores the social and cultural disruptions caused by Latin American and Latinx “locas” (effeminate men, drag queens, transgender performers, and unruly women) and the various forms of violence to which queer individuals in Puerto Rico and the U.S. are subjected. This interdisciplinary, auto-ethnographic, queer-of-color performance studies book explores the lives and work of contemporary performers and activists including Sylvia Rivera, Nina Flowers, Freddie Mercado, Javier Cardona, Jorge Merced, Erika Lopez, Holly Woodlawn, Monica Beverly Hillz, Lady Catiria, and Barbra Herr; television programs such as RuPaul’s Drag Race; films such as Paris Is Burning, The Salt Mines, and Mala Mala; and literary works by authors such as Mayra Santos-Febres and Manuel Ramos Otero. Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes, a drag performer himself, demonstrates how each destabilizes (and sometimes reifies) dominant notions of gender and sexuality through drag and their embodied transgender expression. These performances provide a means to explore and critique issues of race, class, poverty, national identity, and migratory displacement while they posit a relationship between audiences and performers that has a ritual-like, communal dimension. The book also analyzes the murders of Jorge Steven López Mercado and Kevin Fret in Puerto Rico, and invites readers to challenge, question, and expand their knowledge about queer life, drag, trans performance, and Puerto Rican identity in the Caribbean and the diaspora. The author also pays careful attention to transgender experience, highlighting how trans activists and performers mold their bodies, promote social change, and create community in a context that oscillates between glamour and abjection.
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