Trans Theory

Who are trans people? How is trans different from lesbian, gay, or queer? What is the relationship between sex and gender? Sexuality and gender? What is trans politics? This course will look at some theories of trans embodiment, trans cultural construction, and trans expression that consider both the history and evolution of trans and the way transgender expression has both extended the project of “queering” normativity through queer theory and queer expression, and turned that project upside down and inside out. How is it possible to insist that gender is fluid, yet crucial? How do you emphasize the importance of gender, yet also work to undo the importance of gender? Texts will include Julia Serano, Whipping Girl; David Valentine, Imagining Transgender: An Ethnography of a Category; Judith Butler Undoing Gender; C. Riley Snorton Black on Both Sides: A Racial History of Trans Identity; and The Transgender Studies Reader.

Instructor: J. Hovey