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ENGL 264

Transgender:

An individual or group of people who doesn’t fall into what society would consider how a normal man or woman should act or look. This form of <gender identity> is applied to people who discover their assigned <gender> or <sex> does not reflect who they want to be. These people may undergo surgeries to have their body portray a certain gender identity, but this does not make them transgender. Transgender people are also categorized as <heterosexual, bisexuals, pansexual, polysexual, and asexual>.      

Origin:

In 1969, Virginia Charles Prince issued a magazine about cross dressers called Transvestia. It wasn’t until the middle of 1970 where the phrase transgender was developed. Now this word is used as an umbrella term, but some people prefer the term transsexual rather than transgender.

Class examples:

In Gender Trouble the author states that “The very subject of women is no longer understood in the stable or abiding terms” (Butler 2). Here raises the question about whether the “women” are really women? A similar idea was brought up in Herland­ when the women were described as neither being attractive or <feminine>. The men that travelled to this place could not identify them as their idea of a normal female and created a different group for these women (Gilman 62). One can no longer call someone a woman or even a man based on their appearance or the sex gender that they were born with. Transgender has allowed a variety of people to create their own identity.  “The straight mind continues to affirm that incest, and not homosexuality, represents its major interdiction. Thus, when thought by straight mind, homosexuality is nothing but heterosexuality” (Monique Wittig). Homosexuals or transgender people are classified as a different group of people for being queer and unnatural. In order to accept homosexuals/transgender they have to look at those people’s relationship as another form of heterosexual relationship. In heterosexual people’s mind this is the only possible way for this type of relationship to work. When two homosexuals start a relationship it is automatically assume that one person will take the role as a male and the other partner will take the role of a female. This does not necessarily have to be discussed among the couples. 

Contemporary:

Transgender is an umbrella term that is widely used and it does not necessarily have a negative connotation, but not everyone’s appearance confirms what type of gender they are. They may or may not want to be identified as a transgender person. There are people who are homosexual or bisexual, but they do not want to be identified as a transgender. The usage of this term depends on the people and their personal preferences. However, by not wanting to be grouped as a transgender or <transsexual> this has also created another controversy. In the media, popular culture, academics, and science, the term transgender is constantly being altered. Transgender people continue to grow and face different experiences.   

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