day one, the transitioning


Day one of my transgender studies class is so dubbed ‘the transitioning’ for two reasons. One, of course, because it’s about further educating myself on trans* issues. Two, because being in a diverse class requires me to transition to new ways of thinking. It requires me to work my brain muscles.

The first day of class we were supposed to write on the board how much knowledge we felt we had about transgender issues on a scale of 1-10. I have spent some time studying and reading about trans* issues in my free time (for my blog) and in various courses, so I put myself at a 5.5 which I thought was slightly above average. After the rest of the class weighed in (around a 3.5) I began to hesitate with my initial response. How much do I really know? Given that this isn’t something I have personal experience in, what is the highest I could even top out at? I guess in the next ten weeks, I’ll be finding out.

As I talk about this class I will keep the conversation about the actual content of the lecture rather than my thoughts and feelings about what happens in class. I’ll do this to protect the privacy of the other students and to hold some sanctity to the class itself.

The content of the lectures will go as follows:

  1. What does transgender mean?
  2. Intersectionality and Inequality
  3. Experience and Identities
  4. Studying Transgender
  5. Trans History
  6. Trans Politics
  7. Queer and Feminist Intersections
  8. Medicalization
  9. Healthcare Justice
  10. Trans/Gender Non-Conforming Children
  11. Institutional Violence
  12. Incarceration and the Prison Industrial Complex
  13. Trans and Family
  14. Religious Intersections
  15. Decolonizing the 3rd Gender
  16. Strategies of Resistance

Given that these were pulled from the syllabus I expect I’ll be writing about them in close to this order too.

There is one thing, which I found particularly silly. The classroom we’re in is located directly across a hall from two gendered restrooms. To find a gender-neutral restroom, one would have to leave the building entirely. Just something to think about in post one.


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