This week on The Verso Podcast Eleanor Penny is joined by McKenzie Wark and Toshio Meronek to talk trans narratives, the politics of desire, and queer family. In a wide ranging conversation, they take a critical look at the medical model of transition, its relationship to transmisogyny, and tactics of resistance.
If a trans person wants to access gender affirming treatment from the medical establishment, they are expected to tell a story. It's a story told to a doctor or a therapist or a parent, and generally it is expected to justify that person’s need for care. This can be a tricky exercise - especially when the scripts we all have to understand our lives are so closely tied to the expectations of a cis, straight world. It’s trickier still when trans people are policed, punished, excluded and killed simply for living as themselves.
Toshio Meronek is a writer whose work has appeared in The Advocate, Al Jazeera, The Nation, them, Truthout, Vice News, and many more besides. They host the podcast Sad Francisco, and their book - in collaboration with Miss Major Griffin-Gracey - Miss Major Speaks: Conversations with a Black Trans Revolutionary was published in May by Verso Books.
Mackenzie Wark is a professor of culture and media at Eugene Lang College, The New School. She's the author of multiple titles including A Hacker Manifesto, Capital Is Dead, Reverse Cowgirl and Raving, to name but a few. Her latest book Love and Money, Sex and Death: A Memoir was published in September by Verso Books.
In an enlightening conversation that ranges from policing to the housing crisis, from gentrification to pinkwashing, and from gurlhood to femmunism, Toshio and McKenzie discuss what it means to forge your own future, to find your own family, to drum up your own happiness - in short, to write your own story.
Tune in for our next episode where Eleanor will be joined by Loree Erickson and Lynne Segal to discuss care work, disability activism, and the kindness of strangers.
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