Bodily aesthetic affects in trans erotica: towards a wider ‘spectra of desire’

Davy, Zowie (2012) Bodily aesthetic affects in trans erotica: towards a wider ‘spectra of desire’. In: British Sociological Association Annual Conference 2012, 11th April - April 13th, University Of Leeds.

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Abstract

The sexualisation of trans people is a thorny issue due to the pathologizing undertones within sexological literature. After many years of being on the one hand, silenced about sexuality or on the other hyper-sexualized, for fear of being pigeon-holed as unworthy recipients of medical interventions by the medical teams providing healthcare, both transsexual and transgender people have started to explore and produce their “sexual bodies” and represent them in novel ways through prose, poetry and pornographic film. ’The political move to illustrate the wider ‘spectra of desire’ (Stryker, 2006) and experiences of trans-sexuality was announced to be politically important as a way of shifting stereotypical associations surrounding trans embodiment and sexuality generally. These projects of sexual representation rely on transforming spaces and discourses within cultural mediums in which transpeople explore their sexuality. Using trans erotica texts, I will illustrate that ‘transsexualism’ and ‘transgenderism’ are not solely about gender, as a core characteristic, and suggest that sexuality is part of trans subjectivity too. I will suggest further that new representations of trans-sexuality within the erotic representations pose challenges to the medical policy and practices surrounding trans medicalization and the sedated ideas surrounding transpeople as either non-sexual or hyper-sexual. This focus on erotica allows for new analyses and conceptualizations of trans-sexuality that incorporate bodily aesthetic affects of the transitioned and transitioning body. Simultaneously, understanding trans bodily aesthetic affects helps us move away from territorialized identitarian markers, such as gay, lesbian and bi and explore a wider spectra of trans desire.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information:The sexualisation of trans people is a thorny issue due to the pathologizing undertones within sexological literature. After many years of being on the one hand, silenced about sexuality or on the other hyper-sexualized, for fear of being pigeon-holed as unworthy recipients of medical interventions by the medical teams providing healthcare, both transsexual and transgender people have started to explore and produce their “sexual bodies” and represent them in novel ways through prose, poetry and pornographic film. ’The political move to illustrate the wider ‘spectra of desire’ (Stryker, 2006) and experiences of trans-sexuality was announced to be politically important as a way of shifting stereotypical associations surrounding trans embodiment and sexuality generally. These projects of sexual representation rely on transforming spaces and discourses within cultural mediums in which transpeople explore their sexuality. Using trans erotica texts, I will illustrate that ‘transsexualism’ and ‘transgenderism’ are not solely about gender, as a core characteristic, and suggest that sexuality is part of trans subjectivity too. I will suggest further that new representations of trans-sexuality within the erotic representations pose challenges to the medical policy and practices surrounding trans medicalization and the sedated ideas surrounding transpeople as either non-sexual or hyper-sexual. This focus on erotica allows for new analyses and conceptualizations of trans-sexuality that incorporate bodily aesthetic affects of the transitioned and transitioning body. Simultaneously, understanding trans bodily aesthetic affects helps us move away from territorialized identitarian markers, such as gay, lesbian and bi and explore a wider spectra of trans desire.
Keywords:trans sexualities, desire, territorialization, reterritorialization
Subjects:L Social studies > L320 Gender studies
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Health & Social Care
ID Code:5014
Deposited By: Zowie Davy
Deposited On:04 Apr 2012 10:33
Last Modified:13 Mar 2013 09:05

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