not your mom’s trans 101

22 Dec

http://tranarchism.com/2010/11/26/not-your-moms-trans-101/

This article goes really in-depth about “Trans 101.” It starts out by saying that most people’s knowledge of sexes and gender is based on the gender binary, which basically means that there are “two sexes, corresponding with two genders, both of which are immutable and non-voluntary.” He goes on to say that teaching a new perspective is very difficult, and very nearly impossible. Therefore, this new perspective is often “dumbed down” to make it easier for people to understand. Therefore, even well-meaning people can be misinformed.

The article goes on to explain terms such as “cisgender,” which means a person who has no issue with the gender they were assigned at birth, “binary,” which means a person who is comfortable identifying as either a man or a woman. There are also people who are not binary, including genderqueers and androgens. The article discusses that “gender is not a line, it is a huge three-dimensional space too big to be bounded by the concepts of ‘male’ and ‘female.'”

The article also goes into the concept of self-identification, saying that it is a commonly held misconception that cisgenders do not need to identify. The author says that something as simple as answering “yes” to the question “Are you a man?” is an act of identifying yourself as cisgender. It also questions the idea of a natural “sex,” saying that if we base our definition of sex off of body parts that can be injured, maimed, or mutilized, does that mean that a woman who loses her breasts to cancer is less of a woman? Or if a man gets his penis blown off by a mine, is he not a man anymore?

The article itself says that it is just an attempt to bring to light issues and facts that many people are unaware of. The author hopes that his post will be a jumping off point for people to talk about, and learn about the issues it brings up. Trans 101 is not something that’s talked about a lot, and I think that reading this article was really important and helped me to understand Trans 101 more.

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