presentation by Samantha N.

What social factors contribute to transphobic perceptions?

GENDER DYSPHORIA manifests itself when a child (or adult) has a gender identity that does not match their biological identity and typically says ‘I am’ not ‘I want to be’ the opposite gender.
(Di Ceglie 1998)
GENDER IDENTITY has been described as an individual’s internal sense of self as being, male, female, or an identity between or outside these two categories (Wilchins 2002)
GENDER ROLES are what the culture thinks one should do with one’s life, such as qualities, mannerisms, duties, and cultural expectations, according to a specific gender (Bornstein 1998).
GENDER QUEER: either drawing on several gender positions or otherwise not identifying with any specific gender (nonbinary)

CISGENDER: a person who identifies with their sex assigned at birth .

TRANSGENDER people are those whose gender identity or gender expression does not correspond to the gender they were assigned at birth.
TRANSSEXUAL refers to people who desire medical assistance (hormonal/surgical procedures) to transition from one sex to another.

(Hill and Willoughby 2005, p. 533)

TRANSPHOBIA can be defined
as “emotional disgust toward individuals who do not conform to society’s gender expectations” characterized as an intense dislike or prejudice against Trans people

(Hill and Willoughby 2005, p. 533)

Why Transgenderism is An Important Topic

Not talked about constructively/positively in society and in educationTrans youth should not grow up believing that they are sick or broken or alone. Importance to recognize the validity and the existence of transgender identity With our knowledge and understanding of issues specific to the trans community, we open the possibility to create an environment of support and awareness for ourselves and for future trans generations.

-In the U.S., between 2013-2015: 53 transgender homicide victims, none were prosecuted as hate crimes. (mostly Trans women of color)
-2015 was thought to be the historic high with 21 victims...until 2017.
-In 2017, there were at least 29 deaths of transgender people in the United States due to fatal violence, the most ever recorded.
-2018 has seen at least 22 transgender people fatally shot or killed by other violent means.
-More than two in five trans young people (40-45%) have at
some point attempted to take their own life.
-Over 41% of trans men and women are estimated to have attempted suicide — a rate that's nearly 9 times higher than the suicide rate of cisgender Americans.
-Experiences more mental health issues

Stereotypes/Myths About Trans People

"playing dress-up" (perpetuated by media)aren’t “real” men or womenTransgender people live crazy lives. (e.g. drag shows, hyper-masculine or hyper-feminine behavior, drugs, or prostitution)Transgender people are confused.Transgender people are mentally disturbed.Transgender people are gay.Transgender people hate their bodies.You can tell someone is transgender just by looking at them.


definition: the idea that binary gender identity and heterosexual orientation (meaning, there is only one sexual orientation and two genders - male & female) are the norm.
"Ideal family": Husband + Wife + ChildrenThe roots transphobic discrimination lie in the heteronormative social model and the related homogenous view of what a so‐called ideal family should look like.
Effects: internalized transphobia (negative feelings about one’s own nonheteronormative gender identity, gender expressions, and sexual orientation )

Transphobia Within the LGBTQ Community

Miss Major Griffin-Gracy: Prominent Transgender activist and Stonewall veteran

“Transgender people were the first to fight. Yet, [non-transgender] men and white people took over and fucked whoever was there before. It was an inclusive club until we stood up for ourselves, and then it became gay white men running stuff.”

Interview with Jessica Stern 2009


The Christian Debate on Transgenderism
False Interpretations

-In general, religion = scapegoat/excuse used to justify hate
-Individuals cannot define the nature of their “self”; only God can.
-Forbids body alteration (genitalia)
So, biblical teachings don’t necessarily speak to the complexity of transgender identity, nor is the Bible against Transgenderism.


Rare: an openly LGBTQ Muslim feels fully welcome at a mainstream mosque in the US. Cultural norms and traditional readings of sacred texts often uphold a heteronormative binary of gender identification and sexual orientation that don’t allow for a wide range of identities present in today’s society. But: according to a recent survey by Public Religion Research Center, (52%) of American Muslims are in fact accepting of homosexuality.
Transgender men and women are recognized and accepted in many Islamic cultures around the world. The idea of a man/woman identifying as the opposite gender is more likely to be accepted than that of a man/woman expressing sexual desire for someone of their own gender.

What Happens When a Parent is Transgender?
-Younger children are generally more accepting of a parents transness.
-However, children with a transgender parent may experience social stigmatization (disapproval).

The transition of a parent is not a neutral event for children. A wide range of emotions may be aroused, including feelings of loss, grief, as well as betrayal and shame.

Transgender Children
-Research shows that the majority of transgender people become aware of their gender identities at a very early age.
-If not supported: the child will begin to internalize the perception that they are the problem.


Children spend a significant amount of time at school, surrounded by other kids/playmates and figures of authority that aren't their parents.Unfair policies and administrations who fail to advocate against bullies....Because of this, trans students often feel like they have few choices between dropping out or taking their own lives. (High school)Isolation


Cisgender actors who portray Trans characters perpetuate the myth that Trans people are "playing dress-up"Denied authentic representationDenied opportunity to Trans actorsNegative representations of Trans individuals in TV/FilmCoverage about Trans people is inaccurate and cause harm.Merely seeing valid portrayals of Trans characters by Trans actors: -Helps Trans youth feel seen. Their existence is acknowledged.
-Increases support for transgender rights and contribute to decreasing transphobia.

Gender socialization: specific messages and practices we learn in our culture regarding the nature of being male/female or masculine/feminine.Focuses on the meanings we attribute to male and female, of masculinity and femininityThe concept of gender is created through social interaction.
View of Trans people...


The Importance of Transgender Awareness Week (2018) Retrieved from:
Transgender homicide rate hits historic high in US, says new report (2015) Retrieved from:
Violence Against the Transgender Community in 2018 (2018) Retrieved from:
Views of transgender issues divide along religious lines (2017) Retrieved from:
Stances of Faiths on LGBTQ Issues: Islam - Sunni and Shi’a (2018) Retrieved from:
Resilience in Families in Transition: What Happens When a Parent Is Transgender? (2017) Retrieved from:
Questioning the Heteronormative Matrix: Transphobia, Intersectionality, and Gender Outlaws within the Gay and Lesbian Community. (2017). Retrieved from
Why Heteronormativity Is a Bad Thing, (2016). Retrieved from:
A Look at Transphobia Within the LGBTQ community (2018). Retrieved from:
This is What Pride Looks Like: Miss Major and the Violence, Poverty, and Incarceration of Low-Income Transgender Women (2009) Retrieved from:
Top 10 Myths About Transgender People (2012) Retrieved from: