Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Trans 101 (for friends and family)

This is list mostly for my family and friends. A lot of you are from Kentucky too and have had basically zero exposure to trans people and our experiences. I'm sure many have a somewhat warped idea of trans people due to inaccurate and harmful representations in various forms of media. That's okay, it's been a learning process for me too. The important thing to me is that those who want the best for me try to learn. The best way to do this is through stories and resources created by trans people in part or in whole. So here's a list of things that I think would be helpful for my friends and family who are unfamiliar with what it means to be trans but interested in learning.

Shows/Movies/Videos
  • PBS did a story on Atherton HS in Louisville. It's one of the first high schools in the South to implement policies to protect trans students.
  • TED things
    • A list of trans TED talks
    • Nicole Maines talks about the impact that non-trans people can have on the lives of trans people. 
    • Norman Spack talks about his work as an endocrinologist who treats transgender teens.
  • HerStory Show is a fantastic but short series on youtube.
  • Laura Jane Grace (of the band Against Me!) has a show called True Trans. Her band's album Transgender Dysphoria Blues is absolutely incredible.
  • Sense8 is weird and captivating and fantastic sci-fi drama series from the Wachowski Sisters of The Matrix fame.
  • Transparent is a very good drama that centers on a trans woman (yes, played by a cis man) who transitions late in life and tries to manage her dysfunctional family. The show includes several trans actors and writers.
  • Orange is the New Black prominently features Laverne Cox's character Sophia Burset.
  • Tangerine is an independent film about two trans sex workers that is in turns hilarious and heartbreaking and difficult to watch.
  • The LGBT Center in Manhattan put together this "Transgender Basics" video. It kinda feels like a high school sex ed video but it also features 2007 Laverne Cox which is cool.
Links/Articles:
Books
  • Whipping Girl by Julia Serano is fantastic non-fiction. It's many things but one of them is a primer on how the transgender identity relates to feminism and vice-versa. 
  • Nevada is a short novel by Imogen Binnie. Very easy to read with super compelling characters. I don't want to give things away so just read it.
  • A Safe Girl to Love is a collection of fantastic short stories by Casey Plett. She accomplishes a lot in a small amount of space. I would love to read a novel by her.
  • Redefining Realness is Janet Mock's memoir. This is next on my list of books to read but it comes so highly recommended that I wanted to include it.

I will be adding to this list over time. Also, it's worth noting that this list reflects me and my tastes and background (white american trans girl) and isn't meant to speak for all trans people in any way.

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