We Want the Airwaves #12 Girl Talk: An Interview with Julia Serano (Part 2 of 2) Edited by Jessica Glennon-Zukoff

Julia Serano: That’s another thing that, like, makes me not visibly queer is that I colorcoordinate instead of dressing funky !laughter" Nia in!: #olor coordination should al$ays be re$arded If you can’t color coordinate, it’s not my revolution Julia: %efore I transitioned&this gets to the strict limits on if you’re male-bodied or 'resenting as male, like $hat you’re allo$ed to do or not do&I used to color coordinate I liked #huck Taylors and so I $ould have different color #huck Taylors, and I’d make them match my t-shirt If I $as $earing a blue t-shirt I $ould $ear my blue sneakers( if I $as $earing a red t-shirt, I’d $ear my red sneakers I used to have 'eo'le say to me all the time, )*ou kno$ your shirt and your sneakers match+, !laughter" I’m like, )*eah, I did that on 'ur'ose They match , Nia: -ike, they $ere concerned for you+ Julia: *eah, they $ere concerned, and they $ere .ust like )/hy did you do that+, I’m like, )/ell, because they’re the same color and they go $ell together , %asically, the confusion $as mostly that I gave a shit about my a''earance0 [laughter" That $as the gender line I transgressed Nia: /o$, that’s really messed u' !musical interlude" Nia: 1y name is 2ia 3ing /elcome to /e /ant the 4ir$aves This $eek I had been 'lanning on releasing my intervie$ $ith #hicano 'oet 5abian 6omero but I forgot that this $eek is actually the 'erfect time to release the second half of my intervie$ $ith Julia 7erano because her event Girl Talk, a dialogue bet$een cis $omen and trans $omen, is taking 'lace on June 89th It’s going to be really a$esome and $ill 'robably sell out 7o go check out Girl Talk at the 2ational :ueer 4rts 5estival $eb'age There’s also a 5acebook event and I $ill be sure to 'ost a link to it on my $ebsite ;nce again I’d like to thank everyone $ho donated to my Indiegogo cam'aign to hel' kee' the 'odcast going /ithout further ado, here’s Julia !musical interlude" Nia: #an you talk a little bit about Girl Talk+

Julia: 7ure Girl Talk has been a sho$ that’s been a 'art of the 2ational :ueer 4rts 5estival coming u'&it’s the <th annual sho$ There have also been a cou'le of small tours in the last year It started out being called Girl Talk= 4 Trans and #is /oman >ialogue 1y co-curators are Gina de ?ries and Elena 6ose Gina, $ho came u' $ith the idea, came to me at a femme conference in 8@@A that I s'oke at I $as talking about $ays in $hich trans $omen are made to feel irrelevant $ithin queer $omen’s communities, and also $ays that $e can make more su''ortive communities for basically all of us $ho are different in different $ays 4nd so Gina kind of had the idea and she $as like, )I’m $ondering if you $ould be interested in doing this sho$ $ith me,, so that kind of gre$ into Girl Talk 5or most sho$s, $e have trans $omen, $e have cis $omen, $e also have genderqueer 'eo'le $ho are assigned female at birth and genderqueer 'eo'le $ho $ere assigned male at birth The idea is to create dialogue about the fact that trans $omen eBist in queer $omen’s communities, and since so much of the attention in queer $omen’s communities has been about trans men&it’s fine that trans male, transmasculine 'eo'le are a 'art of queer $omen’s communities and everything, but kind of all of the focus having been on trans men takes a$ay from the fact that trans $omen are in queer $omen’s communities and $e face some 'roblems $ithin those communities that trans men don’t to the same eBtent( s'ecifically, $e’re more likely to be seen as sus'ect or seen as not legitimate ob.ects of desire Girl Talk is about talking about relationshi's bet$een queer $omen $ho are trans, $ho are cis, $ho are genderqueer, and trying to highlight and strengthen those relationshi's Nia: 7o, all the $omen in the sho$ are queer but not all are trans+ Julia: 2ot all are trans, no /e try to balance the sho$ so that there are trans $omen’s voices, cis $omen’s voices, though $e’re not talking about it in .ust those terms so much anymore because there are 'eo'le $ho are genderqueer Genderqueer 'eo'le are 'art of the trans umbrella but if you’re talking about trans $omen, that $ord $ouldn’t necessarily describe someone $ho $as assigned female at birth $ho is genderqueer %asically, the general idea of the sho$ is to kind of strengthen these relationshi's, talk about these relationshi's, because a lot of times they’re not talked about I get emails all the time from 'eo'le saying, )I, or a friend of mine, .ust started dating a trans $oman and I’m $ondering are there any su''ort grou's or social grou's for cis $omen $ho are in relationshi's $ith trans $omen+, The re'ly that I usually have is, )7adly, there aren’t , I’ve heard lots of really insensitive, messed u' things that $ere said to cis $omen by their friends u'on hearing that their friend $as dating a trans $oman I’ve had multi'le cis $omen tell me that they didn’t realiCe ho$ bad the transmisogyny in their community $as until they started dating trans $omen Every sho$ is different, $e usually have about 9 or A cast members, everyone does a short 'iece( sometimes there’s music but most of the 'ieces are s'oken $ord 4 lot of times they’re love 'ieces and they’re really u'lifting and sometimes they’re about a really grueling thing that ha''ened to someone, and then someone else $ill do a really funny

'iece and, kind of like a lot of s'oken $ord sho$s, everyone kind of brings something different to it Nia: 7o, it’s more of a 'erformance than a dialogue+ Julia: *eah 4nother reason $hy $e’re not using )#is and Trans >ialogue, is because a lot D there $ere 'eo'le $ho thought that it $as going to be like& Nia: -ike a talk sho$, almost+ Julia: *eah, or a 'anel or $orksho', or something It’s definitely a dialogue amongst the 'eo'le $ho are on stage, in fact a lot of times it’s been really striking ho$ a lot of times the same theme&every sho$, $e let 'eo'le $rite $hatever they $ant, but it seems like every sho$, there’s one theme that kind of runs through a lot of the 'ieces, that all these different artists randomly kind of $anted to say a similar thing 7ometimes the 'ieces $ork off each other, like one 'erson $ill talk about an issue and the other 'erson $ill talk about the issue from a some$hat different 'laceD Nia: /hat have some of the themes been+ Julia: I remember from one of the sho$s, there $ere multi'le things about dating and 'artners&$e’ve had some sho$s $here there is less talk about being in seBual, romantic relationshi's $ith 'eo'le, but I remember there $as this one sho$ in $hich a bunch of us kind of talked about the difficulties $ith regards to that issue from multi'le sides It’s kind of hard, I kind of have to go back and listen to the sho$s to be like, );h, that $as $hat ha''ened here , The sho$s .ust kind of have their o$n life to them and they’ve been really amaCing s'aces /hen $e first started $e $ere really eBcited, $e had a smaller s'ace and it sold out /e $ere really eBcited that that many 'eo'le came out for it 4t the time $e didn’t kno$ ho$ many 'eo'le $ould come out for it 7ince then it’s .ust gotten bigger and bigger and no$adays it sells out $ell before it actually ha''ens It’s been a really eBciting thing to be a 'art of Nia: >o you have ambitions for making the sho$ something that ha''ens more often or does that feel D I feel like that’s a thing that 'eo'le ask, like ,)/hy don’t you do this more+, and you’re like, )*ou have no idea ho$ much $ork goes into these kinds of events0, Julia: *eah, it’s a lot of $ork and it’s also that there are a lot of really amaCing trans $oman artists&like every time $e come u' $ith 'otential cast lists, $e come u' $ith a $hole list of trans $omen&and $e find it hard sometimes to come u' $ith 'eo'le $ho are not trans $omen $ho $e feel aE have something to say on the sub.ect, and bE is someone that $e kno$ is at least a decent $riter or 'erformer, .ust so $e kno$ that if they go u' on stage they’ll not only have something to say but be able to convey it in a $ay that other 'eo'le $ill res'ond to It’s hard sometimes finding cast members for it,

$hen $e do it even once a year ;ne thing that $e have been starting to do&this year it ha''ened t$ice, I $asn’t a 'art of either of them but Gina de ?ries and Elena 6ose $ere&is going out to different colleges that’s a $ay have the sho$ eB'and and for more 'eo'le to see it, and if you’re going to different schools or different 'laces then you can have different 'erformers, and sometimes rely on 'erformers $ho actually live out there near a 'articular college, so that’s something that $e definitely $ant to do more 4s far as here locally, $e haven’t had talks about doing more sho$s here, but there are also other things $e’ve thought about as far as s'reading the $ord about it /e shall see Nia: ;kay, so I’m no$ going to actually ask you the questions that are on this sheet of 'a'er !laughter" 7o, $e’ve already talked about the fact that you’re a $riter and that you also do s'oken $ord but that doesn’t encom'ass all of the art that you do I kno$ that you’re also in a band+ ;r $ere in a band+ Julia: *eah, )$as, at this 'oint *es, I’m a musician I $as in a band called %ite 7iCe /e $ere kind of an indie 'o', noise 'o' ty'e of a band /e $ere really active from about FGGA through 8@@< /e have a $ebsite, bitesiCe net There’s still m'Hs u' there, free m'Hs %asically music for me $as my main artistic outlet from my teenage years through aroundDI guess around my early thirties+ /hich is around the time I got into doing slam 'oetry, $hich I $as doing for a cou'le years I started doing slam 'oetry com'letely uneB'ectedly 1y 'artner at the time $as co-host at the %erkeley Ioetry 7lam, so I $as .ust going to slams all the time, and then& Nia: *ou .ust became a slam 'oet by osmosis+ Julia: *eah, by osmosis0 I had this story that I remembered !from back $hen I $as going to my first transgender su''ort grou' meetings a number of years before, about a 'erson $ho I’d met there, and I .ust started $riting and it came out of me like a slam 'oem, rather than, like, music I $as .ust like, )Juh, maybe I should go $ith this+, 4nd so I did slam 'oetry for a bit&that $as all going on $hile I $as in %ite 7iCe This $as around the time in the early 8@@@s $hen in the %ay 4rea there $ere a lot of different trans-themed sho$s and I had a sho$ called )Gender Enders, that I did then 7o I $as kind of doing music and s'oken $ord and then I became a little bit more activist-y, and as I did I gravitated more to$ards $riting essays, .ust because it’s really hard&like in a song you have maybe F@@ or 8@@ $ords to $ork $ith, in a slam 'oem you have about K@@ or 9@@ $ords to $ork $ith, and it’s really hard to say meaty things That’s not to say that you can’t do good activism $ith music or s'oken $ord&you definitely can&but I felt like the things I $anted to talk about $ere a little more com'leB I started $riting essays, and then I got the o''ortunity to $rite Whipping Girl !A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity", and since then that’s mostly $hat I’ve been doing&kind of more gender and seBual 'olitics-themed essays I’m not actively 'laying music right no$, other than 'ulling my guitar out every once in a $hile in my bedroom for me music $as a big outlet for a long time

Nia: *ou mentioned earlier that you’re sort of )creatively unem'loyed , 4re you looking for $ork, or are you looking to $ork for yourself+ I guess my question is, are you 'lanning on going back to being a scientist at some 'oint or are you sort of headed off in this other direction+ Julia: I am looking for $ork, but it’s hard for me science-$ise because I stayed at a university and I became a research s'ecialist I $as studying ho$ crustacean embryos develo' I have a lot of technical eB'ertise in a very arcane area Nia: >o you mean that there’s no longer interest in that research to'ic+ /hat makes it arcane+ Julia: 2o, .ust that a lot of times there are different research techniques for studying different animals, so a lot of the techniques that I have learned over the last number of years aren’t really hel'ful for me getting a similar .ob else$here It’s also really hard because of cuts to grants&there’s not as many 'eo'le looking for 'eo'le to hire, so $hile I’m still looking and could very easily conceive myself getting another full-time science .ob, I’m also a$are of the fact that that might not be a 'ossibility I’m simultaneously trying to get $hatever 'resenting and $riting 'ossibilities that I can so that if a full time .ob doesn’t 'an out I could be doing $hat I’m doing and get by $ith it Nia: Jo$ is that going so far+ It seems like you’re doing a lot I get your ne$sletter= you’re traveling all over s'eaking and 'erforming Julia: 5or me, one of the things that’s been great is being able to get college gigs, es'ecially because Whipping Girl is $ell-kno$n amongst a lot of 'eo'le in feminist and queer circles and it’s sometimes used in classes %ecause of that I’ve gotten a decent number of college 'resentation invitations, $hich is great because universities have money !laughter" Julia: Lnlike $hen I’ll get invited to read at somebody’s 'oetry event or something and there’s generally not a lot of money there %eing invited to s'eak at colleges has been really hel'ful for me in trying to make ends meet and also trying to $rite If I am in a situation $here I no longer have a full time .ob, I’m .ust thinking about ho$ to maBimiCe 'aid s'eaking o''ortunities so that I can get more $ritings out there Nia: 4re there any sort of best 'ractices you’ve develo'ed or lessons learned in terms of getting yourself out there for those kind of .obs+ 7elf-'romotion, orD+ Julia: /ell, I haven’t really been looking to get, like, say, a $riting gig at a magaCine or anything like that ;bviously Whipping Girl already came out, and I have another book that’s coming out in the fall, $hich I’m eBcited about, so that $ill be good once that’s out there I’m also thinking about .ust 'utting together a com'ilation of a lot of random

'ieces that I have, because I’ve been $riting about trans and queer and feminist stuff for over a decade no$, $hich is really hard to believe I .ust have a lot of 'ieces that $ere either blog 'osts that I thought $ere 'retty good, or 'ieces that I $rote for an anthology that never ha''ened or t$o cha'ters that $ere going to be cha'ters in Whipping Girl but didn’t make the cut for different reasons I’ve also $ritten a lot about 'sychiatric theories of trans 'eo'le I $as thinking about trying to, maybe neBt year, self-'ublish a com'ilation of .ust kind of all these random $ritings, or at least all the ones that make the cut !laughter" Es'ecially $ith $riting and $ith regards to books it’s a lot of $ork to do, but once you have a book and it’s out there you have the benefit of&if 'eo'le are buying it& continuing to make money, sometimes 'eo'le have a lot of misconce'tions of ho$ much money 'eo'le make I’m sure if I, you kno$, did Fifty Shades of Julia Serano or something like that&if you have a book that’s that big, you’re making hand-over-fist money, but $hen you’re $riting about feminist and queer 'olitics even if your book does $ell, there’s not a $hole lot of money there /hen I $rote Whipping Girl, my advance $as fairly small and I $orked really hard& basically, it $as like a 'art-time .ob for me for t$o years I $orked about 8@ hours a $eek on it, it $as a lot The advance $as not nearly equal to the amount of $ork I did, but every once in a $hile, I’ll o'en u' my mailboB and a royalty check $ill be there, $hich $ill be nice Even based u'on that, if you took the amount of hours that I 'ut into $riting Whipping Girl and then added u' all the money that I’ve made off it, it still is not, like, a good salary !laughter" %ut it is nice to get a sur'rise check Nia: It’s al$ays nice to get a sur'rise check Julia: It’s al$ays nice to get a sur'rise check0 I’m kind of ho'ing $ith the neBt book coming out and then if I do this com'ilation 'ro.ect&and I have basically the neBt fulllength book that I’m going to $rite in my head even though I haven’t started $riting it yet If I am in a situation $here I’m $riting full time, if I can 'ut out a book a year&and .ust the momentum of once books are out there you are getting some money back later& that maybe $riting canDI’m kind of ho'ing that it could become this self-sustaining thing /e shall see !laughter" Nia: >o you have a sense of ho$ hard it is to make it a self-sustaining thing+ -ike, do you kno$ other folks that are doing that and living off their $riting that $ay+ Julia: *eah The one 'erson that I kno$ that 'ulled it off basically did a combination of $riting their o$n books and doing anthologies They $ere in kind of a similar situation of having about a book a year 'ublished, so they are one of the fe$ 'eo'le that I kno$ $ho kind of 'uts together a living .ust 'urely doing art It’s really a$esome $hen you can do artistic stuff for a living, and then there’s a $hole other thing $here you can do artistic stuff that’s the stuff that you want to do for a living /hich is like the 'innacle of the dream, right+ The dream that a lot of us have I definitely think about that a lot because, if I do end u' $riting full-time, I think sometimes maybe I should be 'itching

articles to magaCines or $hat if I got a .ob as a columnist for some kind of queer, feminist-minded ty'e of magaCine+ That could be totally good but maybe that $ould .ust end u' being 'ressure to $rite about things that I don’t necessarily $ant to focus on I’m really good at taking in a bunch of information and kind of thinking through it all and then coming u' $ith a ne$ $ay of looking at that 'roblem&$hich is good for books and makes books interesting because it’s like, );h, I haven’t thought of that before , %ut I’m not good at the $hole blogging-everyday thing, $hich a lot of my friends do That’s great, but the idea of al$ays being u' on the ne$s about $hat .ust ha''ened as far as, you kno$, a trans 'erson is murdered, or something’s ha''ening $ith E2>4 !the Em'loyment 2on->iscrimination 4ct", or some female 'o' star said that they don’t describe themselves as a feminist and then everyone $rites about it0 I’m really not good like that I’m better at taking things and thinking about them for a long time rather than reacting immediately to them %ut I kno$ that there are also 'eo'le $ho do $ell through blogging and $riting more currently, $hether it’s .ournalists or bloggers I kno$ that that’s something that a lot of 'eo'le do, so that’s something I think about, because I think I could do that, but I don’t kno$ that I $ould be ha''iest doing that Nia: *eah That’s something that I’ve been thinking a lot about recently&not $riting a book, but the question of $hen to self-'ublish and $hen to 'itchD I’m trying to build a career for myself as an artist and as a $riter and my audience is not very big right no$ I’m ha''y $ith the siCe that it is, but also, I’m trying to build it and I’m also really im'atient I think that’s my biggest do$nfall !laughter" and $hy I could 'robably never $rite a book&because $hen I $rite something I $ant to send it out into the $orld immediately 7ometimes that means 'utting out a blog and not monetiCing it $hen it could 'otentially be monetiCed I kno$ )monetiCed, is kind of an ugly $ord to artists sometimes but if you’re trying to eatDyou kno$+ !laughter" Julia: /ell, there is this kind of self-shaming thing as far as looking do$n on 'eo'le $ho are )selling out,, or 'eo'le $ho are monetiCing I .ust think that it’s im'ortant for 'eo'le $ho are doing art and activism&they should get 'aid for it, right+ 4 lot of us $ould do our art and activism if $e $eren’t getting 'aid for it, in fact $eD Nia: 4nd do0 !laughter" Julia: D And do, and that’s generally ho$ $e all start out, too, but there’s a certain amount of shame that’s sometimes 'ut on )selling out, that $e really should get over I kno$ that $hen I $as in bands for a long time, 'eo'le $ould make fun of, like, if their favorite indie band 'ut out a 'o' hit They $ould make fun of that and call that )selling out , /hether that is selling out or not is a different argument, but there $asn’t this kind of shame ofD if you’re a band and you start becoming successful and you start doing bigger gigs and 'eo'le kno$ you’re making more money&the bigger the gigs you’re doing, you’re making more money There’s a certain amount of res'ect for it, as long as 'eo'le didn’t 'resume that it $as 'ossible to get so big that 'eo'le $ould then kind of start making fun of you There’s nothing $rong $ith the fact that you should get 'aid for

$hat you’re doing, that’s a good thing I think that es'ecially in marginaliCed communities and es'ecially $here art meets activism /e do a lot of times have a lot of shame about the fact that $e’re making money off our $ork 4nd $hat does that mean+ I’ve kind of .oked $ith the idea of being )trans for 'ay, or being a freelance trans activist, or $hatever, because that’s $hat I’m $riting about I’m doing a lot of $ork, so I think that artists and activists should get 'aid, because $e need to 'ay rent and $e need to get by, too Nia: *eah 4lso, I think $e’re creating stuff that is of value !laughter" *ou kno$+ -ike, making art is labor Julia: *eah Nia: #reative labor is labor0 !laughter" Julia: *eah, yeah, eBactly, yeah0 Nia: It’s challenging because it’s not&you kno$, they have these $ebsites like Glassdoor com $here you can see $hat 'eo'le at certain com'anies make or in certain 'ositions make, and for artists it’s not that&you can’t .ust look it u' in a book, you kno$+ Julia: *eah Nia: D-ike $hat you should be making and $ho should be 'aying you0 !laughter" I totally think artists should be 'aid, that art should be valuedDmore 4nd monetarily !laughter" Julia: >efinitely, and I think $e take creative labor for granted I $ill sometimes find myself doing this, like I $ill go to a queer event or something and it $ill be ten dollars to get in and there $ill be a little voice inside my head that’s like, )Ten dollars+0+, Then I’m .ust like, )*es, because 'eo'le have $orked to 'ut this $hole thing on, It’s really hard to organiCe events, it’s hard to $rite There’s a lot of $ork that goes into 'erforming and everything I think a lot of times 'eo'le on the outside, 'eo'le $ho don’t have those eB'eriences, they .ust see the fun 'art of it Nia: They think you .ust roll out of bedD Julia: *eah I’ve had 'eo'le say, talking about Whipping Girl, like, )*ou’re really lucky that blah blah blah, and I’m like, )*eah, I am really lucky that I $as in the right time and 'lace to do that, but, you kno$, I basically didn’t slee' for t$o years , !laughter" %ecause I $as trying to $rite the book $ith a full-time .ob Ieo'le see 'eo'le 'erform and they’re like, )*ou’re doing this fun, eBciting thing by getting on stage and 'erforming , There’s kind of this eB'ectation that that should be enough for you That’s a hard assum'tion to deal $ith

I kno$ $hat you’re saying, because I have thought about, in looking at other 'eo'le’s blogs, the decision about $hether or not to feature ads or not and right no$ I don’t, and maybe that’s a 'ermanent decision or maybe that decision $ill change, but because I’m not doing that $hen I $rite a blog 'iece, it’s .ust, like, free stuff for everyone, and I’m not getting any money for it, although obviously if you do have a blog and you’re getting attention for it and 'eo'le are recogniCing your name, then maybe something you do later on 'eo'le $ill 'ay money for Nia: *eah, I ho'e so !laughter" I’m crossing my fingers 7o, tell me about the ne$ book Julia: The ne$ book is called xcluded and the subtitle is )Jo$ to 1ake 5eminist and :ueer 1ovements 1ore Inclusive , I’m $orried because it has the $ords )eBcluded, and )inclusive, both in it&I may accidentally miB them u' $hen I say it !laughter" The first 'art of the book is a lot of essays that I’ve $ritten over the years that talk about various forms of eBclusion that I face as a trans $oman and eBclusion faced by biseBual and femme folks, those being kind of my $indo$ into the situation, things that I’ve $ritten about ;bviously those are not the only ty'es of eBclusion that occur in our queer and feminist communities by a long shot There are those essays and the second 'art of the book there is a bunch of essays that address $hat I think are some of the underlying 'roblems that lead to eBclusion 4 lot of times, $e $ant to have a nice little easy solution for community 'roblems -ike, );h, $ell, if $e only did this one thing, or if $e only did this other thing, that $ould make everything fine , I think the 'roblem is that the $ays that $e actually conce'tualiCe our feminism and queer activism inherently have double-standards built into them It creates a situation $here a lot of times $e don’t realiCe $hat !those double standards" are /e end u' either 'er'etuating old hierarchies or creating ne$ hierarchies, but in any case $e’re 'er'etuating the ideas of those double-standards, of some 'eo'le being more legitimate or $orth more than other 'eo'le In that second section I&and I haven’t come u' $ith a good $ay to eB'lain this in sound bites, maybe by the time the book comes out I’ll be better at that&but any$ay, it’s a bunch of different ideas that I 'ut for$ard that together I think $ould hel' at least mitigate the amount of eBclusion that ha''ens in our queer and feminist communities Nia: It sounds like $hat’s required is not .ust concrete actions but also a $hole shift in terms of $ays of thinking Julia: *eah I think a lot of times our activism is based u'on fiBed 'ers'ectives To .ust give one eBam'le= there are a lot of cis feminists $ho make 'articular assum'tions about $hat the color 'ink means, or feminine dress, or $hatever They’ll conce'tualiCe all of that in terms of their o$n eB'eriences $ith being marginaliCed as cis $omen 4s a trans $oman, both their analysis and the solutions they offer don’t make any sense from my 'ers'ective 7imilarly, as lots of 'eo'le have 'ointed out in the 'ast, the fact that a lot of the cis

feminists are $hite kind of creates a situation $here their 'ers'ective of $hat the 'roblems are and $hat the solutions are is very different than if you’re coming from the 'ers'ective of a $oman of color 4 lot of it is trying to get beyond basing our activism on as'ects of gender and seBuality having fiBed meanings and the idea that there’s fiBed solutions&for eBam'le that $e should all dress a 'articular $ay or not dress a 'articular $ay, those kinds of things that come u' over and over again 4nother big 'iece of it is noticing ho$ $e mark 'eo'le, $hether 'eo'le are marked or unmarked /ith every hierarchy there’s one grou' $ho is the marked grou'&for eBam'le, trans 'eo'le are the marked grou'&and because $e’re marked $e’re seen as remarkable and $e’re seen as questionable There are all these stereoty'es and everything that 'eo'le $ill 'ut on us that they $on’t 'ut on cisgender 'eo'le because they’re unmarked, right+ Nia: I’m not sure $hat you mean about marked versus unmarked Julia= This is terminology that originated in linguistic-ty'e theory, but a lot of times 'eo'le $ill bring these terms into talking about gender and seBuality %asically the idea is that a lot of times $hen $e have some kind of distinction or binary bet$een t$o different 'eo'le, one grou'&usually the dominant grou'&becomes the unmarked grou' They’re seen asDthey’re taken for& Nia: The normD Julia: DThey’re seen as legitimate, they don’t come under question, $hereas $ith the marked grou', all the focus tends to be on the marked grou' Nia: That makes sense Julia: *eah Nia: I $as thinking of, like, >r 7euss’ 7neetches+ *ou kno$+ !laughter" /here they have the one $ith stars and the ones& Julia: ;h, yeah, yeah, yeah Nia: 7o, that hel's clarify thingsD Julia: *eah Nia: Dthat being marked is not necessarily a good thing It means being highly visible in a $ay that attracts negative attention Julia: *eah, if you’re marked then all the arguments are a!out you 5or eBam'le, there’s a huge amount of feminist and queer theory that decries transseBuals and talks about ho$ $e reinforce 'atriarchy and heteronormativity and everything like that There’s all that

focus on trans 'eo'le but there’s no discussions about $hether cis 'eo'le reinforce heteroseBism, or $hatever, right+ 7imilarly, the $hole biseBual thing, like I said in the very beginning $hen $e $ere talking&the idea that biseBuals reinforce the gender binary, basically because of the $ord )biseBual, being su''osedly binarist Ieo'le don’t look at the fact that, $ell, gays and lesbians, a lot of them think that there’s t$o seBes and only t$o seBes but they don’t get called out 7imilarly, trans 'eo'le go around calling themselves 1T5s and 5T1s, $hy isn’t that binarist, right+ /hen you’re in a 'articular community&and it can be also $ithin a subcommunity, like a gay and lesbian community or a trans community&if you’re taken for granted as being in that s'ace, then you don’t really have to ans$er to anything, but 'eo'le $ho are marked do Nia: 1mhmm Julia: I think that this distinction underlies all forms of o''ression and creates doublebinds for 'eo'le $ho are the marked 'arties, so I talk a lot about that in the second 'art of the ne$ book and try to think about $ays in $hich $e can becomeDlike, I think $e’re getting better and better at being familiar $ith and at being able to 'oint out, );kay, $ell, that’s an instance of seBism, and this is an instance of cisseBism, and that right there is racist, and this right here is classist , /e learn 'articular ty'es of o''ressions and $e kind of study them and $e kno$ all the signs and $e get good at that, but $e’re not generally good at realiCing, );h, hey, we"re o''ressing this 'erson , if you don’t have a label, if you don’t kno$ $hat the )Mism, is behind that /e’re not really good at seeing the telltale signs of the $ays $e o''ress and that’s often ho$ eBclusion takes 'lace I $rite a lot about that as $ell&those are a cou'le of the ideas that I $rite about in the ne$ book, that $ill be out there Nia: I can’t $ait to read it0

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