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Tudor, Alyosxa (2017) 'Dimensions of Transnationalism.' Feminist Review, 117 (1). pp. 20-40.

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Abstract

This article identifies and analyses links between conceptualisations of trans-gender and trans-national and aims for a critical redefinition of political agency. Through an examination of theories on transing, passing and performativity in queer-, trans-, and transnational feminist knowledge production and illustrated by discursive examples from transgender communities and Romanian migrant communities I call for a conceptualisation of entangled power relations that does not rely on fixed pre-established categories but defines subjectivity through risk in political struggle. I suggest that ‘transing’ the nation and ‘transing’ gender could be thought as critical moves for a radical deconstruction of gendered and national belonging. Rather than provide a static definition of the term ‘transnationalism’ the article explores potentials and limits of going beyond ‘the national’ and ‘gender’ and intervenes in forms of minority nationalism that reproduce racism, sexism, heteronormativity and gender binary as the norm of Western national belonging. In particular, building on Jasbir Puar’s conceptualisation of homonationalism the article shows how forms of nationalism in Western transgender and migrant communities rely on a combination of heteronormative binary gendering and the exertion of racism. While a conventionalised approach to transnationalism defines the term as a political strategy based on transnational politics I play with suggesting different dimensions of transnationalism: it could mean ‘transgender nationalism’; the 'assimilation of transgendered persons to the Western nation'; or 'cross-border-nationalism', a form of nationalism often established in migrant communities that constructs the diaspora as a nationalist extension of the homeland. My focus, therefore, is on analysing privilegings, contradictions and ambivalences in gendering, racialising and nationalising ascriptions of (non)belonging. Overall, and as an alternative to romanticized knowledge productions of crossing national and gendered borders I suggest a power-sensitive epistemological and methodological shift in thinking entangled power relations, belonging and subjectivity in trans_national feminist knowledge productions.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: transfeminism, transgender, transnationalism, Romanian migrant communities, passing, intersectionality
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Interdisciplinary Studies > Centre for Gender Studies
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Centre for Gender Studies
ISSN: 01417789
Copyright Statement: © 2017 The Feminist Review Collective. This is the accepted manuscript of an article published by SAGE in Feminist Review, available online: https://doi.org/10.1057/s41305-017-0092-5
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.1057/s41305-017-0092-5
Date Deposited: 19 May 2016 17:54
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/22468

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