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Showing posts from May, 2006

The Incredible Shrinking Male

The Incredible Shrinking Male (Gender Role: An Historical Introduction)

Gender roles are obviously changing in the modern western world, but why? Some might contend it is a matter of personal choice, an issue of liberation from stifling tradition, or the product of moral decadence. I contend that gender role changes are the result of forces unleashed by the Industrial Revolution that moved productive work and the generation of sustenance from the home into the factory/business/corporation. This process has resulted in a vast broadening of the female role and a virtual elimination of an identifiably unique male gender role.

In traditional economies the basics of gender roles were determined by physical sexual differences. Women bore the children and raised them until they were weaned because women had wombs and mammary glands (OK, I know you know this part, bear with me) which meant womens’ productive work had to accommodate child rearing. Thus women did work that necessitated less ph…

A Review: "Talking About Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity With Our Kids".

Recently our esteemed moderator, Michele, introduced a booklet to the Gender Evolve arena. This is a review of the booklet by one GE member. As they say on television, "The opinions expressed herein may not necessarily reflect the views of the staff and management of the television station!"

I have listed the link below to the booklet:

http://www.aml-lma.org/docs/an_homoparentalite.pdf

This booklet was a creation of the Lesbian Mothers Association of Quebec. This booklet, because of its' breavity, is not intended to be a complete and in depth study of talking to your children about gender identity. It does, I believe, provide a useful guide to start on the road to full disclosure to your offspring on what it means for a parent to be transgendered. For those who have not been around children in quite awhile it begins the journey of "telling it like it is" to your children in a meaningful and compassionate manner.

The childrens' drawings of parents, interspersed …

Roots of the Transgender Movement: The 1966 Riot at Compton’s Cafeteria

As we approach the 40th anniversary of the Compton Cafeteria Riot in San Francisco, I thought I would post a little bit of history about it. This event took place 3 years before the more well known Stonewall Inn Riots in NYC. At the time, it was such a 'non-event' that the riot was not even mentioned in the local San Francisco papers. However, 'it was the first known instance of collective, militant, queer resistance to the social oppression of transgender people in United States history.' This bit of LBGT history would have been lost if not for the work of Susan Stryker and Victor Silverman, who together produced the documentary film 'Screaming Queens' about the Compton Cafeteria Riot and the begining of the fight for LBGT Civil Rights. Susan Stryker's article about the riot follows.

Stacie

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http://criticalmoment.org/issue13/stryker

Roots of the Transgender Movement: The 1966 Riot at C…

Survival is not a game

My response is to a transsexual woman in a Yahoo transgender group who appears to feel misunderstood and slighted by those who seem to lump all transgendered people into a common category.

Dear Friend.

It seems that underlying the intensity of your passionate feelings lie the issues of investment, honesty, and the willingness to risk it all to be yourself. I have sense that for those who take a casual or cavalier attitude to the issue of being transgender (such as those who dress infrequently), and yet insinuate their situation is akin to that of a transsexual woman, shows a colossal discounting of the total dedication that a transsexual woman must demonstrate just to survive. Such an undertaking includes pain, loss, suffering, and disruption of her life that she must endure in order to survive.

Survival is not a game and is not fun, is not sexy, nor is it sensual. It is what it is and without such a change, a transsexual woman would be unable to survive. That set of circumstances is ver…

Can We Box Gender?

In a Yahoo group dealing with transgender issues, a member who identified herself as transsexual indicated that putting on women’s clothing does not make one a t-girl, a transsexual, or a tyranny. She noted an increasing number of "cross dressers" claiming to be “transsexual” but states that the term “transsexual” should be limited to someone who is "transitioning from one anatomical sex to another"? She went on to note her difficulty in grasping the concept of a 6'3", 220 pound man in his wife's stockings while she is out of town calling himself a t-girl. She further indicated that she has lived and worked as a female and been on HRT for several years.

She indicates that there are two basic gender variations: a transsexual who identifies with the opposite anatomical sex, and honestly believes she was born to the incorrect gender and has taken steps to physically change to the correct gender and a cross dresser/transvestite who basically enjoys the clot…

What Men Don't Get

The following article is written by an independent journalist in regard to the behavioral differences between men and women. If we look beyond the stereotyping based on physical gender, and instead apply what the author says to the differences between masculine or feminine people (regardless of biology), I think this article is fairly on-point. Knowing that someone born male can naturally feel and behave feminine, and someone born female can naturally feel and behave masculine, I think the author does a great job of humorously contrasting a few of the differences between masculine and feminine people.

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What Men Don't Get
Marni JamesonMarin,
Independent Journal

'WHY DO YOU want to cover that beautiful floor?" This is my husband's standard response whenever I suggest buying an area rug.

"Because a rug will finish this room."

"The room is finished," he insists. Dan thinks a room is finished when the doors are hung and walls are painted.

I huff off,…

...just as I believe (l'un séparer)

I Believe we all have a responsibility to the world to be happy.

I Believe every talent should be utilized for the good of all.

I Believe that clarity of understanding is more important than being of a "right" opinion.

I Believe that Cold Stone Creamery was created by divine proclamation.

I Believe that human pridefulness is the reason relationships fail.

I Believe all human beings are a tri-unity: Spirit, mind, and body.

I also Believe we are all obligated to place our priorities in that exact order.

I Believe that "they lived happily ever after...", but they worked diligently together for every moment of happiness.

I Believe in the fairy tale...with some modifications to perception, that is.

I Believe in homemade espresso (with a little Grand Marnier).

I Believe that the intimate love you give another is an exclusive gift.

I Believe that sex is a natural expression of that gift.

I Believe the bass guitar is the holiest of musical instruments.

I Believe that self-analysis is m…

Conflicted

In my soul resides a box
Its origins unclear
And in that box which never locks
Lies treasures held with fear.

The wonderful, the horrible
So intricately intwined
Despairing joy
Alluring pain
Depressing ecstasy

A unified duality
fulfilling from within
Compels me forward
Drags me back
Again, again, again

Here my yin is yang
My yang is yin
I cannot stay out
But dare not stay in

Oh, highest of highs
And lowest of lows
You are my paradise
and also my prison

Strange alien friend
you inner place
That I must share
and desperately conceal
I hate you with an aching love
as you direct my will.

There in that box which never locks
resides the spectrum of my soul.

Lesbians' Brains React Differently

The following article was in the May 9, 2006 edition of the SF Chronicle. I thought it was of interest because it is related to previous studies that show phyiscal differences in transexual brains.

Maybe it's true when we say we can't help being what we are. "No, we are not 'crazy,' there is a physiological reason I am a tranny. "

Stacie
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Study: Lesbians' Brains React Differently
- By RANDOLPH E. SCHMID, AP Science Writer
Tuesday, May 9, 2006
(05-09) 15:44 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) --
Lesbians' brains react differently to sex hormones than those of heterosexual women, new research indicates. That's in line with an earlier study that had indicated gay men's brain responses were different from straight men - though the difference for men was more pronounced than has now been found in women.

Lesbians' brains react differently to sex hormones than those of heterosexual women, new …

Sharing the Dream

We will often hear ourselves as transgender people say, "We need to stick together". I have often wondered why we are so inclined to say this? Do we say it because we need each other for protection? Maybe. Do we say it because we need friends to party with? Partial maybe. Do we say it because we want to share makeup tips? lol Maybe that too. It is such an instinctual thing to say dont you think?

I belive ultimately we say it because we know on some deeper level the importance of community. Community is made by shared dreams. We share and live and breath as sisters in the same dream. Imagine everynight sharing wonderous dreams with people like you...What a beautiful thing to be sharing this dream with my sisters.
Amara

“The dream is owned not by the dreamer alone, but collectively by the group, and the individual dreamer is simply the vessel the dream decided to borrow to have a conversation with the whole tribe. The tribes view the dream as a map for their waking hours. It is…

Become the Beautiful Flower

As a small child about 4 to 5 years old in kindergarden one day, as part of the days activities, the class was separated having the boys go to one side of the room and girls to the other.
I remember my teacher bending down to me, having to explain to me in what seemed like some length why it was that I was on the wrong side of the room and needed to be standing with the boys.
I remember how imbarrassed I felt as the boys laughed at me.
This was perhaps my first lesson that all the world lived for each others expectations.
Amara

"Many of us unconsciously believe that we’re unworthy or defective. We adopted this belief very early in our lives when the people we looked up to disapproved of our demands, wishes and behaviors. We concluded that we had to learn to be good.

Unfortunately, ‘being good’ usually meant giving up our own differences or uniqueness. We learned that we might get the love we wanted if we acted and felt like others wanted us to.

If we seek true joy and connection wit…

One Small Step Forward?

The April edition of the American Historical Review (that’s the most significant professional historical journal in the country) carries as it’s featured article “The Disruptive Comforts of Drag: (Trans)Gender Performances among Prisoners of War in Russia, 1914-1920.” On the cover is a photo one of the most acclaimed of these female impersonators, in full costume. The article is typically academic and tends to discuss the role of theater in the prisoner’s lives and psyches as much as anything. The author, an Israeli historian, concludes that the performers helped to create a sense of normalcy and comfort for POWs and that was particularly true for those men, mostly young, who played the female roles.

But in dealing with the female impersonators, the author takes what was for me a rather disappointing approach. He seems amazed that many of them actually continued to dress as females when not on stage in their everyday lives and that they worked to develop and exhibit feminine mannerisms…

TOP 10 Signs She's Flirting

Hi ladies,
I thought I would lighten up the mood a bit with this cute piece. I guess I just need to feel how fun it is to be who we are right now:)....


Top 10: Signs She's Flirting With You
By
Oliver Jameson

Flirting is almost an art form. It takes much practice to execute the subtle signals of interest with perfect timing. Thankfully, there is no shortage of flirting tips for men out there. However, flirting is only half the battle. To truly make your rapport with a woman successful, you need to recognize when she's flirting with you .
Women are masters of subtlety, so it's your job to remain especially aware of every gesture, every word, and every move she throws your way. Always remember that attentiveness is key.
a word to the wise
Although the signs that a woman is interested in you can boil down to these 10 points, you need to know that any single point can be deceptive. The lady you're chatting up may be an attention-seeking serial flirter with no intentions of ever g…

Ditch The Disclaimer

I spent the majority of last week surfing TG home pages in my quest to promote the petition. I ran across something on several home pages that really bothered me. I can’t for the life of me figure out why girls would put up disclaimers on their websites such as:

“WARNING This site deals with subjects such as crossdressing, transvestism, transsexualism and related issues. If you are uncomfortable with any of these things please leave now.Please note that there is no pornographic material on these pages and you must be 18 to view them”

To me that’s just saying to people that you think there is something wrong with it. Why else would you put that up there? If there is no pornographic material, then why must you be 18 years old to view it?

Sure some of the sites contained pictures of girls wearing lingerie that was a little risqué, some of them had links to adult sites, but most of them I would not think twice about letting my 12 year old look at. Are these people ashamed of who they are…

New Science on Gender, Hormones and the Brain

New evidence shows how hormones wire the minds of men and women to see the world differently

By Ronald Kotulak, science reporter
Chicago Tribune, April 30, 2006

Scientists are still a long way from figuring out what women and men really want, but they are getting a lot closer to understanding what makes their brains so different.That women and men think differently has little to do with whether they are handed dolls or trucks to play with as infants. After all, when infant monkeys are given a choice of human toys, females prefer dolls and males go after cars and trucks.

The differences, researchers are beginning to discover, appear to have a lot more to do with how powerful hormones wire the female and male brain during early development and later in life.

Among the newest findings: A previously unknown hormone appears to launch puberty's sexual and mental transformation; growth hormone is made in the brain's memory center at rates up to twice as high in females as in males; and th…

The Crossdressers' Manifesto

The Crossdressers' Manifesto

(Last Winter I spent days answering a TG "nomination questionnaire" which among other things wanted to know “what message do you have for the TG community?” After discussing my answer with her, Shari Williams pointed out that if I have a message, I also have a vehicle to proclaim it. So here is my answer, expanded. It's been blogged on my 360 site, but somehow I knew it was destined for GenderEvolve most of all.)

In my half-century of lifetime, I have seen a significant amount of progress in the conceptualization and perception of gender-diverse issues in the public eye. From my view at least, I’ve seen acceptance become relatively real for most of the Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual parts of the gender spectrum. We sit here in 2006 with an incredibly popular movie with a strong gay theme, television shows that directly deal with lesbianism, and popular personalities comfortable with admitting, even proclaiming, their homo/bisexuality. This is not the…

An Exemplary Anti-Discrimination Policy

Unity in Diversity - Recognizing Heterosexism and Homophobia

I would like to share the following anti-discrimination policy developed and practiced at McGill University in Montreal Canada. Here is an example of the social progress that is being made within Canada in regard to gender identity and sexual orientation. The inclusionary approach and positive reinforcement of diversity taken at McGill University should serve as an example for educational institutes and policy makers worldwide.

Equally interesting is the definition of the terms "heterosexism" and "heterosexual privaledge", which describe the common perception of society in assuming what is "normal". Also to be appreciated is the section which describes how to deal with heterosexism and homophobia. With new paradigms being developed within the educational system, it is only a matter of time before society at large gains a greater understanding and acceptance of human diversity.

The following is exer…

Truth and Beauty

Image
Open your eyes what truth do you see?
Then close the doors to you and me
Take yourself on a journey where no one goes
To an unreachable place that only heaven knows

Walk a dream of your choosing
Express all of your hearts desire
You are no longer bound to the earth
But you are an unquenchable fire

An unbroken promise you live to remember
By your soul so my lives ago
A promise to priceless to sell
That your nature has come to know

In the majestic void you found your truth
How destiny has become your friend
Your sacrifice saves those who may fall
And now your truest beauty is without end

AmaraAll we could ever need to feel successful, satisfied, and fulfilled lies within us. How we feel about ourselves is simply a matter of how we choose to think and the ideas we allow ourselves to entertain. When our thoughts are positive, full of self-love and self-acknowledgement, we naturally feel secure, confident, and capable. The behaviors and opinions of those around us have no bearing on how we feel, because w…