what is becoming increasingly apparent to me is that trans women & femmes of color are only invited in the room to share about our "journeys" and not about our ideas and politics.
part of transmisogyny is the reduction of trans life to *experience* and not *intelligence.*
the idea here is that trans women & femmes lack the capacity to comment on larger structures and can only speak about ourselves.
what this does is make transfemininity something assumed to be shameful ("tell me more about how you came to accept yourself!" read: why would anyone want to be like you). what this does is make this thing 'gender' and especially this thing 'gender non-conformity' only the domain of trans femmes -- a logic which hurts us because we become minoritized even though others also have genders and femininities.
trans life reduced to journey and experience provides fodder for cis people to theorize us and to politicize our experiences of violence and abstract them to effect the whole "LGBT community." this is about stabilizing cis supremacy: trans people are always objects for inquiry, for inspiration, for intrigue to be equally dissected and admired and demonized by cis people.
i know intimately that if i were to speak about things beyond my body -- climate change, history, pop culture -- it will always be collapsed to metaphor or expression of my personal identity/journey. i know that i am forcibly denied abstraction because my gender makes me always treated as literal.
what would it mean to commit to trans intelligence? to have trans femmes speaking and writing and dreaming on a host of topics with credibility and acknowledged rigor?
it would require the explicit naming of transmisogyny -- how trans women & femmes are reduced to aesthetic objects for cis fantasy and consumption. it would require the collective responsibility of non-trans femme LGBT people to aggressively and consistently center trans femme intelligence at all levels, not just the *trans* ones. it would require us all challenging the misogyny and racism embedded in separating "experience" from "knowledge" itself.
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