TransRadical

News and commentary for the transgender, gender-nonconforming and allied community.

Posts tagged trans women

Jun 4


Apr 19
“The idea that all anti-trans sentiment arises from the fact that, as transgender people, we “transgress binary gender norms” does not resonate completely with my personal experiences. As a somewhat eccentric kid, I was given plenty of leeway to opt out of boys’ activities and to cultivate an androgynous appearance and persona. I was sometimes teased for being different, for being an atypical or unmasculine boy, but it was nothing compared to the venom that was reserved for those boys who acted downright feminine. And now, as a transsexual woman, I find that those who wish to ridicule or dismiss me do not simply take me to task for the fact that I fail to conform to gender norms - instead, more often than not, they mock my femininity. From the perspective of an occasional gender bender or someone on the female-to-male spectrum, it might seem like binary gender norms are at the core of all anti-trans discrimination. But most of the anti-trans sentiment that I have had to deal with as a transsexual woman is probably better described as misogyny.”

Julia Serano, Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity



Apr 12

Apr 3

We don’t need to be repeating in the African American community what we have observed being aimed at white transwomen for decades in terms of the rabid transphobic hate from rad fems, fundies, GL people and the scientifically illiterate transphobic cis masses.

We don’t need to have our academics espousing ignorant psychobabble like autogynephilia. We also need more of our clergy and legacy civil rights organizations getting on board with helping us not only stopping anti-trans violence aimed at our community, but helping us push trans human rights laws through.

Our African descended cis community must be an example to others in how to treat their trans populations with dignity and respect. We need that to happen so that we can do our part to uplift the African American community.

Monica Roberts, ”Our African Descended Cis Community Must Treat Our Trans People Better


Mar 30

***TW: transmisogynist Sh-word*** // Don’t forget, Adrienne Rich was a transmisogynist.

andyisreadingbooks:

fuckyeahlesbianliterature:

kiriamaya:

transradicalactionnetwork:

The self-described feminist poet Adrienne Rich died yesterday. If you are a regular follower of feminist blogs, you’ve no doubt seen countless heartfelt sendoffs to the woman, to whom the word influential applies if nothing else.

But for all the good things people could say (and I won’t) about her, it would be wrong to whitewash her participation in the rabid transmisogyny the plagued so much of the second-wave feminism.

Rich recieved an acknowledgement in one of the most notorious transmisogynous works of all time, Janice Raymond’sThe Transsexual Empire: The Making of the She-Male. Raymond credited Rich with “read[ing] the manuscript through all its stages and provid[ing] resources, creative criticism, and constant encouragement.” She also quotes Rich at one point in the book describing trans women as “men who have given up the supposed ultimate possession of manhood in a patriarchal society by self-castration.”

Cisfeminists may wish do adopt a Puritan policy of not speaking ill of the dead, but the trans women targeted by Rich, her contemporaries, and their modern counterparts cannot afford that luxury.

Bolding mine.

I’ve been trying to figure out how to deal with this on FYLesLit. I’m less interested in her as a feminist and more as a poet, for the purposes of this tumblr. Should I reblog her quotes with the context that she was a transmisogynist? I could not reblog anything of hers at all, but I’m hesitant to dismiss all of someone’s fictional work based on their feminism/opinions. For instance—I continue to love Ender’s Game despite having no positive feelings for Orson Scott Card. And I wonder how helpful it is to dismiss all problematic lesbian writers for this tumblr, instead of owning up to this history (and continuing legacy—how many trans lesbian books can we name?). 

If you’d rather I didn’t reblog anything of hers, though, I can do that. 

It’s so easy to dismiss second wave feminists as wackos who enjoyed being transphobic and forget that they had extremely different experiences with and feelings about gender and gender essentialism than cis women living in 2012. Second wave feminists lived at a time in history when it was illegal to send somebody a letter in which you wrote about birth control - forget about actually being able to use it, but it was legal for a husband to rape his wife, when gender-based discrimination was widely regarded as a joke, but a working woman earned only 60% of the income a man earned. I could go on with examples of absurd and horrific sexism for some time. 

"It’s so easy to… forget that [second-wave feminists] had extremely different experiences… than cis women living in 2012." What about trans women living in 2012? What about trans women living at the time that they said these horrible things?

You speak as if how transgender people should be treated is nothing more than an academic exercise. You speak as if transphobia in the feminist movement has no effect on the lives of real people. 

Trans women are not hypothetically, and the transmisogyny among women who call themselves feminists is not a thing of the past. Trans women are still banned from the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, the largest women-only gathering in the world. (And the irony on spelling women with a y while barring women with a y from attendance seems entirely lost on them.)

You talk about the discrimination that cis women suffered at the time of the second wave. As if trans women did not suffer also? As if trans women did not in most (if not all) cases suffer much worse?

To this day, over half of trans women are raped at some point in their life; many are raped on multiple occasions. I’d count all the transgender friends of mine who have been raped on one hand, but unfortunately the technology to graft dozens of extra fingers onto the human hand has not yet been perfected.

To this day, 64% of transgender people make less than $25,000 a year. It’s still perfectly legal to fire someone for being transgender in 34 states.

My heart goes to any of my sisters (trans, cis or otherwise) who have suffered under the discrimination of an unfair system. I am currently homeless myself, so believe me, I know your pain. 

But a tragedy against a cis woman is not any more tragic than an equal one against a trans woman. A tragedy against a trans woman is not less tragic than a lesser one against a cis woman.

Trans women have fought for our rights. We have fought for the rights of all women and of all queer people. Many of us have died for our cause. Many, like the great Marsha P. Johnson, have never had their murderers found or brought to justice.

I understand the suffering women went through in the past and still go through. Believe me, I understand better than most. But how does the suffering cis women went through justify feminists like Adrienne Rich turning their guns away those actually responsible for their oppression of women and onto their own sisters who have suffered with them?

It doesn’t. Sojourner Truth knew it, Sylvia Rivera knew it, and I think if you’re really honest with yourself, you know it too.

(via poesizing)


Mar 29

Don’t forget, Adrienne Rich was a transmisogynist.

[TW: Sh-word]

The self-described feminist poet Adrienne Rich died yesterday. If you are a regular follower of feminist blogs, you’ve no doubt seen countless heartfelt sendoffs to the woman, to whom the word influential applies if nothing else.

But for all the good things people could say (and I won’t) about her, it would be wrong to whitewash her participation in the rabid transmisogyny the plagued so much of the second-wave feminism.

Rich recieved an acknowledgement in one of the most notorious transmisogynous works of all time, Janice Raymond’sThe Transsexual Empire: The Making of the She-Male. Raymond credited Rich with “read[ing] the manuscript through all its stages and provid[ing] resources, creative criticism, and constant encouragement.” She also quotes Rich at one point in the book describing trans women as “men who have given up the supposed ultimate possession of manhood in a patriarchal society by self-castration.”

Cisfeminists may wish do adopt a Puritan policy of not speaking ill of the dead, but the trans women targeted but Rich, her contemporaries, and their modern counterparts cannot afford that luxery. 

Transmisogyny is misogyny; you can’t ignore someone’s misogyny when evaluating them as a feminist.


Mar 26

Mar 10

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