Transfeminist Perspectives in and beyond Transgender and Gender Studies

Edited by Anne Enke
Lambda Literary Award for Best Book in Transgender Nonfiction, 2013
Book Cover

PB: $35.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0747-4
Publication: May 12

HC: $86.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-0746-7
Publication: May 12

Ebook: $35.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0748-1

268 pages
6 x 9

An argument for bringing transgender studies into women's studies departments and an exploration of the impact of trans issues in various aspects of higher education

<p><A HREF="">Read the Introduction (pdf). </A></p>


If feminist studies and transgender studies are so intimately connected, why are they not more deeply integrated? Offering multidisciplinary models for this assimilation, the vibrant essays in Transfeminist Perspectives in and beyond Transgender and Gender Studies suggest timely and necessary changes for institutions of higher learning. Responding to the more visible presence of transgender persons as well as gender theories, the contributing essayists focus on how gender is practiced in academia, health care, social services, and even national border patrols. Working from the premise that transgender is both material and cultural, the contributors address such aspects of the university as administration, sports, curriculum, pedagogy, and the appropriate location for transgender studies. Combining feminist theory, transgender studies, and activism centered on social diversity and justice, these essays examine how institutions as lived contexts shape everyday life.


"Transfeminist Perspectives in and beyond Transgender and Gender Studies is a very worthwhile book. Enke is knowledgeable about the field, and frames the issues nicely, explicitly addressing some of the core problems in feminism and women’s studies. This anthology shrewdly demonstrates how transgender studies can do feminist work, and it goes a long way toward furthering that important critical/political task."
—Susan Stryker, Professor of Gender & Women's Studies at the University of Arizona, and author of Transgender History

"Transfeminist Perspectives in and beyond Transgender and Gender Studies , is a smart, well-written, and appealing book. Enke has defined, explained, and situated the concept of ‘transfeminism’ vis-à-vis the study of gender. Her book is truly multi-disciplinary and the essays address the challenges that trans students, researchers of transgender subjects, and teachers of trans/feminist theory and activism face. This will be an important book." 
—Paisley Currah, Professor of Political Science at the Brooklyn College of New York, and co-editor (with Richard Juang and Shannon Minter) of Transgender Rights

"Enke’s book is crucial to teaching how gender identity and trans issues have shifted and will continue to push gender studies. There is no other collection on transgender theory and action that has this level of detail and focus on higher education and gender studies-related disciplinary concerns. Transfeminist Perspectives in and beyond Transgender and Gender Studies , examines how institutions as lived contexts shape everyday life and thus the context for thinking, learning and researching trans issues. Enke’s introductory essay is superb, and the collection's interdisciplinary range is comprehensive—it covers key topics in gender studies, and it provides theoretical and experiential critiques of the field of gender studies as well. This is an indispensable volume." 
—Cris Mayo, Associate Professor of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and author of Disputing the Subject of Sex: Sexuality and Public School Controversies

"The twelve essays in this volume...address a diversity of academic topics and styles ranging from controversial theory to more pedestrian policy advice. All focus on the radical potential of transgender analysis, rather than seeking to recuperate 'transgender' as an individual identity...(T)his book will be a valuable resource in the university library."
—Women's Review of Books

"The collection does an excellent job bringing together multidisciplinary works from academics, educators, and activists to make the case for integration of feminist studies and transgender studies, and to highlight the relevance of transgender analysis for everyone. The diversity of topics, points of view, and writing styles can be seen it functions to keep the reader engaged in the process of making connections. This volume will appeal to a great variety of readers interested in social justice, diversity, gender, and the far-reaching potential of trans analysis, including upper-level undergraduate students and graduate students, faculty, staff, and community members."
— Gender & Society

"(D)iverse and innovative... (this) collection offer(s) something for academics and activists who are interested in trans, feminist, or queer approaches, or all of the above, from interdisciplinary social science and humanities perspectives."
— Signs: Journal of Women and Culture in Society

"(A) timely and energetically collaborative work.... a rich, diverse collection of twelve essays that consider transfeminism in the Academy and beyond.... (T)his is a volume that presents many voices to underscore the fact that there are many voices demanding to be heard."
—WSQ: Women's Studies Quarterly

"Taken individually, each chapter is informative and some are also provocative. Taken as a whole, the volume represents a substantive contribution to the literature on trans theory and practice in higher education and social policy.... There are three primary strengths of this text: the thoughtful navigation of highly contested language, the range of topics covered, and the connections to allied social/academic movements. The nuanced navigation of language that Enke provides is thoughtful and necessarily cautious.... This book has a wide range of audiences within and beyond transgender and gender studies classrooms.... The approachable, accessible writing style of the authors also makes this book useful to many outside of academia as well."
—Teachers College Record

Table of Contents

Introduction: Transfeminist Perspectives • A. Finn Enke 
Note on Terms and Concepts • A. Finn Enke PART I “This Much Knowledge”: Flexible Epistemologies 
1. Gender/Sovereignty • Vic Muñoz 
2. “Do These Earrings Make Me Look Dumb?” Diversity, Privilege, and Heteronormative Perceptions of Competence within the Academy • Kate Forbes 
3. Trans. Panic. Some Thoughts toward a Theory of Feminist Fundamentalism • Bobby Noble 
4. The Education of Little Cis: Cisgender and the Discipline of Opposing Bodies • A. Finn Enke PART II Categorical Insufficiencies and “Impossible People” 
5. College Transitions: Recommended Policies for Trans Students and Employees • Clark A. Pomerleau 
6. “Ain’t I a Woman?” Transgender and Intersex Student Athletes in Women’s Collegiate Sports • Pat Griffin 
7. Training Disservice: The Productive Potential and Structural Limitations of Health as a Terrain for Trans Activism • Christoph Hanssmann 
8. Transnational Transgender Rights and Immigration Law • Aren Z. Aizura PART III Valuing Subjects: Toward Unexpected Alliances 
9. Elusive Subjects: Notes on the Relationship between Critical Political Economy and Trans Studies • Dan Irving 
10. Reclaiming Femininity • Julia Serano 
11. What’s Wrong with Trans Rights? • Dean Spade 
12. When Something Is Not Right • Ryka Aoki Notes 

About the Author(s)

Anne Enke is Associate Professor of Gender and Women's Studies, History, and LGBT Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.