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Adventure Art Critique Essay Humanities Social Sciences Theory

Transgender without Organs? Mobilizing a Geo-Affective Theory of Gender Modification

By Lucas Cassidy Crawford, 2008

This essay is animated, then, by the question of how our styles of affect and movement may become “trans” in ways that cast doubt upon our current valorization of cities in representations of queer space. How might we trouble our certainty that small towns need to be escaped, that less populous cities can never quite do the trick or ever offer us enough tricks, that migrating to big cities is an uproblematically happy experience untainted by culture shock, or that one’s desire to be there is unsullied by contributory conditions such as class or economic need? My motivation for raising such questions is neither to archive nor to justify existent modes of living gender rurally, but rather to point toward new creative potentials. Drawing on Deleuze and Guattari, my aim is to unsettle? their word, significantly, is “deterritorialize” (1987, 156) the model of the transgender or transsexual subject, if only because this increasingly coherent model of the subject entails practices that demand medical, subcultural, and financial resources often unavailable to (or undesired by) some rural gender-fuckers?and probably many urban ones as well.] Prying open the terms “transgender” and “transsexual” in a way that might allow more people to belong to them or to desire them is an important project; however, the vignettes and theoretical interventions that constitute this essay also revel in the deterritorializing potential of not being recognized, not being counted, of being ignored by urban trans theories and cultures, and of finding or crafting ceaseless mobility in seemingly static and conservative locales in ways that may never move trans-urban cities.

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