After the last two reblogs, I almost instantly regretted it, not least because the middle position I stake out between so-called TERFS and trans militants results in internet outcomes only a masochist could love.
You really haven’t lived, though, until a congenial, seemingly reasonable Marxist approvingly emails you an essay from a right-wing Christian think tank and then snarks when you balk. What’s so striking to me about the cruder trans excluders is the combo of religious zeal and paucity of evidence for all their fuss. This combo to me, coupled to a deep conviction that the people they target for pathologizing and ostracism are monsters if they object too stridently, is often a sign of working backwards from a bias, and is among the reasons why my middle position is somewhat less middle lately. I’ll clarify that when, somewhat later this week, I engage down in comments.
Since, sadly, the belligerent vulgarizing of radfem critique continues on radical Twitter, by people who seem utterly convinced that they’re punching up, I am going to own up to, and apologize for, the glaring omission of a trans voice from my “both sides” reblogs the last time around. I am commending my readers to this Trans Advocate interview by Cristan Williams with Swedish researcher Cecilia Dhejne. I’ve chosen it because Dhejne co-authored a study that is among the most widely used to pathologize and fear-monger around trans people.
The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and Fox News are among the many mainstream sources that have cited the study to cast trans people in a negative light, particularly to the effect that gender confirming medical treatment doesn’t help them. The Christian think tank essay I mentioned above also cites it. These negative pieces citing the study clearly furnish a lot of the talking points bouncing around the internet at the moment. This is my main reason for boosting this six-year-old interview with Dehne, who lucidly explains the extent to which trans opponents have grossly misrepresented her work while clarifying what it actually shows.
Williams: Before I contacted you for this interview, were you aware of the way your work was being misrepresented?
Dhejne: Yes! It’s very frustrating! I’ve even seen professors use my work to support ridiculous claims. I’ve often had to respond myself by commenting on articles, speaking with journalists, and talking about this problem at conferences. The Huffington Post wrote an article about the way my research is misrepresented. At the same time, I know of instances where ethical researchers and clinicians have used this study to expand and improve access to trans health care and impact systems of anti-trans oppression.
Of course trans medical and psychological care is efficacious. A 2010 meta-analysis confirmed by studies thereafter show that medical gender confirming interventions reduces gender dysphoria.
You can read the rest here.