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Biography Critique Essay Humanities Nonfiction Social Sciences Theory

This is My Voice on T: Synthetic Testosterone, DIY Surveillance, and Transnormative Masculinity

By Lisa Jean Moore and C. Ray Borck, 2019

How have biomedical innovation, regulation, and distribution of pharmaceutical testosterone prescribed to trans men created new forms of medical, community, and individual surveillance of masculinity and masculinization? Our systematic analysis of more than one hundred trans men’s testosterone vlogs provides evidence for the production (and consumption) and reproduction of a very narrow set of hegemonic scripts about what a male body is, how it is achieved, and what it means to become a man. We find in this medium, multiple overlapping agents of surveillance: the state, the medical-industrial complex, the interactive loop between ourselves and our screens, the videographer and the trans man, the viewer and watched, hegemonic masculinity and its internalizations. We offer a critical feminist reading of the way that surveillance technologies produce a particular type of transmasculine subject with consequences for cultural understandings of gender nonconformity.

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