Monday, August 24, 2009
On Thursday, feminist Germaine Greer published a short article in the Guardian about Caster Semenya, the woman who is being forced to undergo gender testing by the IAAF because she won a race while having an appearance that is considered masculine. As a result of the case, many are writing about the question of “what makes a man or a woman,” and, of course, that can be a recipe for disaster.
Greer’s piece is a perfect example. After reading it over several times, I honestly haven’t the slightest clue what her overall argument is. One moment she seems to rightly accept that a person who understands herself as a woman and identifies as a woman is a woman, and the next she is mocking and undgendering women who don’t meet her own personal, cis-supremacist standards. I don’t know what she ultimately thinks about Caster Semenya, but I do know blatant, unapologetic transphobia when I see it screaming out at me from the page. . . .Read More plus Comments
by Germaine Greer
What makes a woman? Are women made? Feminist orthodoxy says yes; feminist fundamentalists hold that biology is a cultural creation. You can see what they mean; biology has traditionally studied the male animal and extrapolated the female as a disembodied set of reproductive organs.
Even though we know that a Y chromosome is only an X that has lost a leg, we still think in terms of male = perfect, female = imperfect. In plainer terms what the academic feminists could be taken to be saying is that (a) you're a woman if you think you are and (b) you're a woman if other people think you are. Unfortunately (b) cannot be made to follow from (a).
Nowadays we are all likely to meet people who think they are women, have women's names, and feminine clothes and lots of eyeshadow, who seem to us to be some kind of ghastly parody, though it isn't polite to say so. We pretend that all the people passing for female really are. Other delusions may be challenged, but not a man's delusion that he is female. . . .Read More
by Ily Goyanes
Matt Kailey wears many hats. He is a writer, editor, media personality and public speaker on transgender issues. He has spoken at universities across the country as well as appeared in documentaries.
Kailey won the Writers Exchange Award from Poets & Writers, Inc. and was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. He has also been a judge for the Lambda Literary Awards. He is the managing editor of Out Front Colorado, one of the oldest LGBT publications in the nation and his writing has appeared in The Advocate, Instinct, Frontiers, and many other print and internet publications.
He writes Tranifesto, a blog promoting gender diversity and discussing transgender issues. He is also the Denver Transgender Issues Examiner. Kailey had his erotica story, Teeny Weenies, Inc. published in Best Transgender Erotica.
IG: How do you identify regarding your sexuality?
MK: Usually gay, meaning attracted to men. But I also have a queer identification, which, to me, represents a potential attraction to a variety of people. This does not mean that I am automatically attracted to everyone. What it means is that I can find myself attracted to someone based not on their maleness or femaleness, but on certain characteristics, both physical and emotional, that I find attractive. . . .Read More