liv: oil painting of seated nude with her back to the viewer (body)
[personal profile] liv
So I happened to come across a post by [livejournal.com profile] shweta_narayan where she's trying to find some language for what gender she is [sic; the OP explicitly requests she as a pronoun]. And I can in many ways relate to what she's describing (apart from looking for a word in a non-English language or a concept of gender from a different culture; in as far as I consider myself to come from a cultural and ethnic minority, it's not one that does gender in ways that strike me as particularly different from the mainstream culture I'm also part of.)

There has been lots of work done in trying to separate out different aspects of sex and gender; even separating sex and gender from eachother is a huge step forward. But even among people who are aware that you can't just look at someone's genitals and decide a whole swathe of things about their life, there's a whole range of potential for hurt and confusion. I think it's probably useful to be able to say not just "I'm a woman who is not particularly feminine", but to go further and say, I am a woman in terms of how people read me, but not so much in terms of how I think of myself in my own head.

And to do so without accidentally claiming a trans identity that would be appropriative of others' experiences. [livejournal.com profile] shweta_narayan says I'm not cisgendered and that seems to fit better in my head than actually saying "I am transgendered". I mean, theoretically they're synonymous, transgendered simply means not cisgendered. But I find I bristle a bit when people tell me I'm transgendered simply because I have interests and personality traits which are regarded as not-feminine. I feel more comfortable with thinking of myself as a female scientist than as a trans or genderqueer individual who has female-assigned genitalia but works as a natural scientist and is better at abstract reasoning than interpersonal stuff. Even though if you asked me whether I think of myself as female in general I would probably hesitate and flail rather than come out with a definite yes.

I have definitely asked myself why, if I consider that I have a weak internal sense of gender, I should spend all this time thinking about the right words to describe exactly what my gender is! I think it's partly that I read [livejournal.com profile] shweta_narayan's post and smiled to myself a bit. And maybe it's partly that my impression of not having very much internal sense of gender is that what gender identity I do have doesn't fit any of the established categories. I don't feel strongly female, but I most certainly don't feel that I'm male and I'm being coerced by social expectations into living as a woman against my will. I also don't feel that I have several genders, or that I move between different genders at different times; I feel either weakly female or somewhat more strongly... the best word I can pick out of [livejournal.com profile] shweta_narayan's list is agendered. Even that's kind of a tangle because how can I feel "strongly" about what is essentially the absence of an identity feeling?

The problem is that I am afraid I'm doing harm by even talking about this. The post I've linked isn't so much about happy fun self-discovery, as it is a response to a really painful argument in the previous post. There is so. much. pain in that damn thread.

If I noodle around having lots of ideas about gender and seize on complex descriptions that seem to fit how I feel better than just unqualified "female", then I could be providing ammunition for sexists who make all kinds of generalizations about all women. Eg women are always more emotional than logical, women always want to have children, women are always exclusively attracted to men, women care about shopping and handbags... Perhaps I ought to be making a political point that I'm a woman, and I'm not like that (or any number of other stereotypes), rather than conceding that I'm not really all that female. I sort of hope that one way round that is to make very clear distinctions between gender performance and gender identity (in addition to the already very useful distinction between gender and sex).

But on the other hand, if I insist on a gender identity that requires whole paragraphs to describe, am I making things worse for people who actually are trans*? I definitely know people and have read of many others for whom having an internal identity that mismatches the box the rest of the world wants to shove them into is a source of serious problems and dangers. For me it's pretty much just a curiosity, really, so maybe I should just shut up and stop as it were trying to be cool and different. I also suspect that my feeling of not having much gender identity may come from being in a situation where I can just be who I am and nobody really cares very much what sort of genitals I have. When I was a kid I got into fights with anyone who in any way doubted that I was a girl (which, um, didn't exactly help because girls weren't supposed to respond to insults with physical fighting...) so I must have had some sense of gender identity then. If a lot of people went around trying to tell me that I wasn't really a woman (for example because my birth certificate said I was a male baby [counterfactually], or because I care more about my career in a relatively male-dominated field than about makeup and babies [which is actually the case, I'm just lucky to live in a situation where it doesn't matter]), I might in fact discover that I do have a strong gender identity after all.

This seems to fall straight into the horrible mess where a lot of feminists end up embracing really transphobic ideas. Pretty much everybody, even the most cissexual and cisgendered person ever, feels to some extent uncomfortable with feminine social roles, because society is sexist, duh, and nearly everything that's considered female or feminine is less valued and less powerful than everything that's considered male. And even where female things are equally valued or even more valued, very few people of any gender want to accept absolutely the whole essentialist package because nobody is a "typical" woman in every respect, such a creature doesn't exist. So feminists quite reasonably want to work for a world where it's possible to have a thoroughly female identity and yet still be an individual, and still have access to economic and political power and genuine respect and so on. Which can make it really hard to understand why someone would ever reject the gender category assigned to them, because you believe politically that gender categories don't define who you are.

There seems to be some willingness to concede that if you're actually trans, if you have a strong internal sense and / or a physiological condition such that your sex doesn't match the one assigned based on a cursory glance at your crotch when you were born, you have the right to be who you are. But if you're just in some kind of ill-defined non-traditional gender situation thingy, you should stick to the sex you were assigned at birth in order to help convince the world that gender doesn't have to restrict your life. Or perhaps you should be "out and proud" about it in order to make things easier for other people who are, for want of a better word, non-binary in some way.

I also keep coming back to the liberal bubble problem. I can make a post like this and people may disagree with me, but it's not likely to have any serious social repercussions. Indeed, the most likely source of drama that might show up in response to this is people telling me I'm not sufficiently supportive of people on the trans* spectrum. I'm acutely aware that for many people a post like this would be a provocative "coming out" statement and they'd only desperately hope that it wouldn't lose them friends or their job or their family or even make them the target of violence. I saw a discussion on FB a while back where a person was complaining about transphobic humour, and there was a comment to the effect that the commenter (someone involved in Cambridge Queer circles I think) had never encountered any actual jokes directed at trans people, but was annoyed by straight cis men making sarcastic comments about politically correct language for discussing gender issues. I don't want to minimize that too much; clearly it is harmful and rude for people to be sarcastic about eg people identifying as a complex gender rather than just "being" male or female. But what proportion of genderqueer people move in circles where genderqueer is even a concept that people can make sarcastic jokes about?

So maybe I want to follow [livejournal.com profile] shweta_narayan's example and say that not only woman, but cissexual woman is a good term for how people read me. Cis is one sort of privilege I benefit from. Being part of circles where most people are pretty accepting of various sorts of gender identity is another. But I'm less sure of: what specific label actually works.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 11:35 am (UTC)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kaberett
For what it's worth, I don't think this is appropriative or offensive. I feel very strongly that there is no One Right Way to be trans - that people shouldn't be put off using the label because they haven't walked through fire to get it; that you don't have to hurt in ways x, y, and z to be "allowed" it; and so on.

I ran into something like this last weekend, actually - someone was discussing creating women-only space, which on querying they edited to "space for people treated socially as women". And the idea that they wanted that space, and that I'd be welcome in it, was an ENORMOUS trigger for dysphoria - where phrasing it as "space for people who experience oppression as women" doesn't, perhaps because the latter phrasing acknowledges that our need for that space arises due to shared experience of *problematic* social behaviour, rather than misguided social behaviour? (I here include "making assumptions about people's gender when not corrected/told otherwise" as "misguided" rather than "problematic"; it's not always how I feel, and I'm aware that's a contentious position to take!)

I also get very angry at the idea that "we" have to perform our genders in certain ways to Be A Role Model - we Have to be Women Doing Science, we Have to be Shouty Trans People, we Have to be Shouty Crips - I mean, I AM a shouty trans* crip, but I'm not ALWAYS shouty about it, and I pick the circumstances in which I shout. And I'm not letting down the sodding side by keeping myself safe. And nor is anyone else!

As for the proportion of genderqueer people who move in circles where it's an understood concept... well, we tend to find our community :-) There's a private facebook group for non-binary people in the UK to socialise, for example!

Also also I agree that labels are unsatisfactory. I dither between "non-binary" and "genderqueer" and hope to eventually find something that fits better than either of them.

AND NOW I should stop rambling disjointedly and get on with the things I was *supposed* to be doing :-)

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 01:25 pm (UTC)
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] azurelunatic
I had an experience with a particular "women-only" space that keeps haunting me, even though the space itself is making efforts to be inclusive. It's for anyone who identifies as a woman, and ... I've got that genital arrangement, so I count in theory; I answer to feminine pronouns; that space ought to be a place where I'd fit in. Yet the idea of belonging to it sent me into screaming panic, and binary gender choices on forms set off dysphoria.

(And for me, "making assumptions about people's gender when not corrected/told otherwise" tends to make the jump from "misguided" to "problematic" when it turns to "when corrected/told otherwise about people's gender vs. assumptions, gets argumentative".)

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-25 03:29 pm (UTC)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kaberett
The most noticeable impact sexism has had on my life is the bit where I've been sexually harrassed/assaulted in every place I've ever lived. There's other within-my-family stuff, but that's the external wossnames.

I know that facebook skews: on the other hand, the non-binary UK group *seems* pretty representative to me. I'm aware it's not a resource everyone has access to, but: yes I'm white, yes I'm upper-middle class, but my discussion about gender isn't all academic and the facebook group DEFINITELY is more about mutual support than about theorising.

And, well, no, I don't think everyone can leave behind the shitty environments they grew up in? And I am aware I have enormous advantages? But when I say "we find our community", I'm talking very much as someone as queer/crippy/neuroatypical/not-actually-as-British-as-I-appear, and I'm talking as someone whose first obvious brush with mental illness and suicidal ideation was as a direct result of being raised Catholic in a divided-on-religion, united-on-homophobia, generally abusive family. I know that other people have other, more difficult experiences. But I still have enormous knee-jerks about the assumption that I'm not talking from a place of having to leave my family's culture.

[ugh, sorry, this is really incoherent and what about MEEEEEEEEEEEEEE, and probably I should not post it until I am less melting with heat and so on? and I do know that not everyone is as lucky as I am in terms of being able to escape? but.]

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-25 04:01 pm (UTC)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kaberett
<3

suspected was misunderstanding that could be cleared up, hence thinking I should go away and wait until less brain-melty? but thank you for clarifying, and I will try to come back and be more constructive once I've y'know had a cold drink :-)

also you are an awesome ally and. yes. Totally agree on not-wanting-to-be-exclusionary-fail?

I will think a bit more about the space-definitions thing -- this was in a very particular context and relatively small group of people (i.e. ~10 of us), where four of us are some flavour of trans* and none of us have passing privilege, and the suggestion for phrasing was being made by a cis woman (who'd started out with "women-only space" while meaning "no cisdudes space", which I also think is problematic). So, yeah, I came into that conversation a bit fraught already which is why it stuck in the mind! Will def think some more & thank you.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 12:07 pm (UTC)
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
"I have a weak internal sense of gender"

Also exactly how I feel. I don't feel particularly female, I don't want to be male, but I have a cis-female body, so that's how I experience the world. I did dress as a boy for about 2 years between ages 8-10, but it was more that I had no interest in being female than actually wanting to be male. I suppose because it's a weak sense I don't actually think about it a great deal, and because I have an exaggeratedly female-shaped body I wear clothing designed for women. And I recognise that I'm fortunate to be in that relatively safe situation.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-25 04:57 pm (UTC)
monanotlisa: Diana as Diana Prince in glasses and a hat, lifting the rim of the latter rakishly. HOT! (Default)
From: [personal profile] monanotlisa
This is also something that makes me roll my eyes: how physical structure is supposed to reflect how female we feel.

...and yes, as you know, I also have a distinctly female-shaped body -- athletic, but with wide hips and a small waist and strong thighs and so on.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 01:09 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I don't think this is appropriative at all. I've always had a very weak sense of internal gender, and found it quite difficult to seperate that out from just not fitting societies models of gendered behaviour.

The idea that if you don't have a very strong sense of dissonance you should just carry on living as your assigned gender to show that it isn't limiting is something that very nearly stopped me transitioning. Given how much more centred and happy I am as a not-very-masculine-maybe-a-bit-genderqueer-but-mostly-passing-as-cis man than I was as a non-very-feminine woman, it's an idea I'd quite like to discourage.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-03 10:02 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Oops - only just seen this. That's what I get for posting anonymously.

Ridiculous as this might sound, the thing that clarified a lot of my uncertainty about my own gender was Iain M. Banks - imagining myself in a society where I could transition easily, without all the pain and hassle, and realising that whether or not to do so would be a complete non-brainer. In the real world, it turned out to be more inconvenience and hassle than outright pain, but would still prefer to live in the Culture :)

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 01:16 pm (UTC)
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] azurelunatic
My personal identified gender of record in places that bother to ask with a fill-in-the-blank rather than a describe-your-genitals is "geek", because that's the most useful social pigeonhole, the most useful advertising pigeonhole, and says a lot more about my approach to life than my anatomy does. My current gender stack reads "geek, genderqueer, practical femme".

I have a half-baked rant in my head about how the natural progression of embattled identities involves first only people to whom it's a fate-worse-than-death issue being Out and fighting, which eventually makes it safe for people who have less urgently important identification, but still have that identification, or might, come to realize and accept or maybe even embrace it. The fact that people who don't have an iron-clad certainty in the matter are feeling safe to talk about the potential means that as much as it sucks to not be a cisgendered person in a cis-privileging society, something is starting to go right.

I can report that the fact that I was able to talk about my not-entirely-cisgender identity was a large factor in one of the trans* people I know being able to accept that biology was not destiny, inquire of their own identity, and come to realize and accept herself as a woman.

I panic when anything attempts to stuff me into the "female/woman" box, because if it's a box (limiting) rather than a badge (describing), then I cannot be Dude (which sometimes I am) and cannot be Other (which I need to be able to escape into even if I am being Woman at the time). I need to be equally free to say "YOU. OUT OF MY GENDER." or "FINE. YOU DO THAT, AND I'LL BE OVER HERE BEING SENSIBLE." if someone's being prescriptive about What Is Woman in a very wrong way.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-28 12:16 am (UTC)
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] azurelunatic
My personal reasons for degendering in connection with geekdom is far less that geekdom is unwelcoming to me while I identify as a woman, but because geekdom is more welcoming to me as I am and wish to be than femininity has ever been, and probably ever will be.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 01:35 pm (UTC)
redbird: purple trilobite (trilobite)
From: [personal profile] redbird
I think a piece of what's going on here is that "how important is gender to you?" is a different question than "what gender are you?" I do think of myself as a woman (though not feminine, and in fact I find some attempts to make me do "feminine" things disturbing), but I don't care enough about it to correct all casual misgenderings. (I will correct someone who calls me "he" in an online conversation, especially if it's connected to any group/space I feel even casually part of; the guy who says "sir" or "señor" in asking what I want to order for lunch, I will just ask for a sandwich.)

There are other people to whom it is important that neither "woman" nor "man" entirely fits who they are. I'm not one of them, and I don't know whether, if there were several generally accepted genders, I would still identify with this one. When I check the "prefer not to state" box for gender when that's offered, it's literal truth: because I don't think my gender is relevant to that interaction, and an act of solidarity with people for whom none of the boxes fits, or who strongly feel that their gender is none of the public's business.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 06:28 pm (UTC)
monanotlisa: Diana as Diana Prince in glasses and a hat, lifting the rim of the latter rakishly. HOT! (Default)
From: [personal profile] monanotlisa
This post resonates with me, especially this:

"I don't feel strongly female, but I most certainly don't feel that I'm male and I'm being coerced by social expectations into living as a woman against my will. I also don't feel that I have several genders, or that I move between different genders at different times"

While I am a cis woman, the nuances of sex and gender are not simple at all to some of us -- as I mentioned in my recent review of Tomboy the movie, I constructed so much of my public persona from external cues, not in any way internal preferences. I also wonder whether a differentiation between physical and sensual enjoyment of your body on the one hand and your gender on the other makes sense -- I enjoy my physicality tremendously, but my gender identity is not particularly strong either. Or think Buck Angel, whose gender identity is powerful but who revels in his body and the set of genitals that came with it.

Basically, your subject line: lo, it is true.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-26 12:50 pm (UTC)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kaberett
Tomboy is available from the Harry Harris LGBT+ Library, and you are welcome to borrow from it (for free!) -- and for that matter to get me to deposit it with someone Useful so it can make its way to you :-).

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-23 10:16 pm (UTC)
nicki: (Default)
From: [personal profile] nicki
I think this is one of those areas where my subculture gets in the way of understanding the way in which people understand the overculture.

I read pieces similar to this and I understand what y'all are saying, but I don't "get" it. It feels to me like a reaction to society's over emphasis on the importance of superficial? gender performance or maybe an over identification with and rebellion against society's definition of gender performance? IDK?

When I read your post (and similar posts from other people in the past) it feels to me like the posts are saying, "There are these things I like or am interested in or am good at, but they aren't girl things, so I don't know if I'm a girl." And I don't get that? I'll have to think on it more (I actually read your post, took a shower, went to the store, and then came back to comment because I needed to think about it), but I think one of the advantages of having been a military brat is that resilience and capability were far far more important for the women I grew up around than gender-performance was and everyone pretty much knew that gender-performance was a uniform you put on, not the person underneath (Like, your identity is that of a male or female, or neither maybe, how you perform that is your uniform, identity doesn't change with your clothing). So I have a hard time understanding how being "out of uniform" changes who you are? IDK, I'll have to think about this more.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-01 04:27 am (UTC)
nicki: (Default)
From: [personal profile] nicki
You're almost coming from the opposite direction, saying that of course I'm female because there's no reason why women should have to conform to feminine stereotypes, anything that I do as a social woman is naturally a female thing to do.

That's exactly the direction I am coming from. I'm a girl, I'm good at math? Well, girls must be good at math then. (or whatever out-of-stereotype thing a woman might like or be good at).

It would be nice if we had a societal shorthand for "not strongly connected to any particular gender identity." :P

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-24 07:07 pm (UTC)
naath: (Default)
From: [personal profile] naath
I'm not sure of what a really exact label for me would say; but I'm certainly not sufficiently dysphoric about my body to feel that the social hassle of getting people to recognise me as non-binary gendered is worth it, even though if that was an easy thing to ID as I probably would. So I guess for me trying to make the "woman box" stretch to fit is an easier fight than fighting for the right to not be in it; but of course I realise that for other people the balance of things works out different, because if everyone were Just Like Me the world would be a Very Odd Place.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-24 10:24 pm (UTC)
ceb: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ceb
I have no gender; I'm not a woman, I just happen to be female. I don't have a better label than that for it though.

I also suspect that my feeling of not having much gender identity may come from being in a situation where I can just be who I am and nobody really cares very much what sort of genitals I have.

Having had exactly this kind of discussion at Bicon, it is apparent to me that it is possible to be biologically female and feel very strongly female-gendered (in the same way that it is possible to be biologically male and feel very strongly female-gendered). So if you've given serious thought to gender and what you feel is well not really anything, then that's what you are.

I have no idea how common this is, I wish I knew. It's not a thing you can easily divine from other people's behaviour, so you only find it out when you have these sorts of "do I have a gender?" conversations, which are inevitably with people who are much more likely to be unusually gendered somehow.

The thing that gives me pause is, I know a lot of FTMs, almost all of whom were more feminine than me before transition, and I sometimes feel like I'm being left out on a limb here (I have no more desire to be a man than I do to be a woman). It's... disconcerting.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-24 10:42 pm (UTC)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kaberett
Something something desperately over-performing assigned gender in an attempt to make it stick/not get found out/convince oneself? moar words only uh brane

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-24 10:51 pm (UTC)
ceb: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ceb
Yeah, I can see how people in that situation might end up over-compensating for a while before deciding that actually this is just wrong. And in every case it's about an individual deciding on their own what's best for them, as far as I know there's nothing in the water ;-). It's just sometimes it feels like I'm trying to do something so weird that everyone else has given up on it...

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-25 06:26 pm (UTC)
ceb: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ceb
I do hope this stuff isn't too painful for you.
Ha, not at all, I'll happily go on about it all night given the right arena ;-)

I feel I get perceived as a woman and that counts for something //
people in the linked discussion who are arguing that non-feminine women should call themselves women in order to expand the range of options for other women
The other reason I don't have this conversation with people in normal life is that mostly the situation in which it comes up is when someone's (a) assuming I'm a woman and (b) assuming something stupid about women, and (b) seems like the more useful part of that to address (as in, more useful to society at large and also more likely to be taken in).

goodness only knows I know cis men who are more feminine than I am!
Yes, me too :-)

I want to be a person, not a gendered-person.
Exactly!

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-30 10:25 pm (UTC)
khalinche: (Default)
From: [personal profile] khalinche
Ha, not at all, I'll happily go on about it all night given the right arena ;-)

I would really like to have this conversation, or one of these conversations, with you sometime.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-06 10:08 am (UTC)
ceb: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ceb
I keep failing to say: yes, I'd like that :-)

Sometime when you're in Cambridge anyway and we manage to be in the same place for dinner?

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-06 11:45 am (UTC)
khalinche: (Default)
From: [personal profile] khalinche
Sounds good to me.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-07-25 02:51 pm (UTC)
rysmiel: (Default)
From: [personal profile] rysmiel
I can strongly sympathise with not feeling a particularly strong gender identity - or at least, not feeling one that defines in terms of a female/male duality, and I've felt a lot more comfortable in pretty much all spaces online since deciding to obscure my gender. (One of my strongest feelings here is that the physiological sex of my body would ideally only be relevant to people having professional medical interactions with me, and such of my lovers as have preferences in the matter.) Elements of my identity like "writer" or "voluntary Canadian" or "strives to be a good friend" feel immensely more important.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-13 02:57 pm (UTC)
atreic: (Default)
From: [personal profile] atreic
Placeholder comment - lots and lots of this really resonates with me. You should have a big 'come and talk about gender if you identify with this post' meet-up so we can all get together :-)

(no subject)

Date: 2012-08-21 11:23 am (UTC)
transcendancing: Darren Hayes quote "Life is for leading, for not people pleasing" (Default)
From: [personal profile] transcendancing
I was pointed here by a friend because I'm in a similar space of experiencing things. I don't not identify with my female sense of gender or my female body, I do very much. But I also experience wishing I could spend time in different gendered body shapes and can strongly envision living my awesome life but moving from shape to shape as fit my internal sense of self. I find not that I have a weak sense of gender internally, but instead that I have an extremely strong sense of self, and that my need to be true to that sense of self is greater than my need to go in any particular direction with gender. I am also aware that I will be unlikely to have any issues of presentation or pronouns, though if I weren't 30 ish years into using female pronouns I'd probably prefer gender neutral ones, tbh, perhaps that is something that will change... I am unsure.

This is a recent experience of several things just 'clicking' and adding up all at once to an unexpected picture where I am not as cisgendered as I think I am. But also, I do not live in the future with magic science and so I'm fortunate also to be able to live with some form of acceptance of my current space and shape, even if I miss knowing the shape of my life lived in different shaped bodies and exploring those space within myself and with my loves. My experience is one of moving between mentally and emotionally, but having only one physical setting. I am focusing on it as a limitation of science and technology, not a lack in me, presently.

(hopefully this is on topic and you don't mind my joining in...)

(no subject)

Date: 2013-05-07 04:52 am (UTC)
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
From: [personal profile] alexseanchai
So feminists quite reasonably want to work for a world where it's possible to have a thoroughly female identity and yet still be an individual, and still have access to economic and political power and genuine respect and so on. Which can make it really hard to understand why someone would ever reject the gender category assigned to them, because you believe politically that gender categories don't define who you are.

Gender categories do define us, though. They shouldn't limit us, they shouldn't shuffle us into neatly defined boxes, they shouldn't produce patterns where (for example) female lawyers are not as common as male and male paralegals are not as common as female, but they do define us. Which is why it's so important, I think, to ensure that people can define their own gender in their own way, and to have vocabulary for the various and sundry ways to do gender.

Soundbite

Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

Page Summary

Top topics

October 2017

S M T W T F S
1234567
8 910 11 121314
15 161718192021
22232425262728
293031    

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags

Subscription Filters