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Essay History Law/Legal Nonfiction Social Sciences

A Defining Moment in Civil Rights History? The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, Trans-Inclusion, and Homonormativity

By Elias Vittuli, 2010

This article traces the history of the struggle for trans-inclusion in the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), focusing in on the decision to take gender identity protections out of the 2007 ENDA. It situates this struggle in the larger histories of the national mainstream gay and lesbian movement and the emergence of visible trans activism in the 1990s. The author argues that the decision to take gender identity protections out of the 2007 ENDA should be understood as part of the wider record of compromises and alterations made to the bill, which must be contextualized alongside the move within the national mainstream gay and lesbian movement toward homonormative politics and strategies.

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