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Critique Essay Nonfiction Social Sciences Theory

Fleshy Specificity: (Re)considering Transsexual Subjects in Lesbian Communities

By Kelly Coogan, 2006

The transsexual subject position has recently been subsumed under the labeling “transgender.” This article considers the implications of this new labeling for transsexual subjects and their capacity to be incorporated into, or at least configured as affiliated with, lesbian communities and their popularization of transgender terminology. By tracing the complicated academic and political etymology of “transgender,” this article shows how the term unfairly erases the lived experiences of transsexual subjects by ignoring their specificities in the flesh. The article concludes by offering alternative disciplinary matrices and conceptual schemas through which to better imagine transsexual subject formation and transsexual subjectivity.

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