The Online Othering of Transgender People in Relation to 'Gender Neutral Toilets'

Colliver, Ben and Coyle, Adrian and Silvestri, Marisa (2019) The Online Othering of Transgender People in Relation to 'Gender Neutral Toilets'. In: Online Othering: Exploring Violence and Discrimination on the Web. Palgrave Macmillan. (In Press)

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Abstract

In this chapter we provide an exposition and critical analysis of some ways in which transgender people are ‘othered’ online and attempts to resist or challenge this. This is achieved through the discursive analysis of 1756 online comments made in response to ten YouTube videos concerning ‘gender neutral toilets’. Three themes were developed: ‘Gender neutral toilets as sites of sexual danger’; ‘Claiming victimhood: Gender neutral toilets as undermining the rights of cisgender people’; and ‘The delegitimisation and othering of transgender people’. The theme on delegitimisation and othering is elaborated in detail. It consists of subthemes concerning the invocation of nature and biology to construct transgender people as challenging the given order; the mobilisation of religious and moral values and norms; the delegitimisation of transgender people by constructing them as psychopathological; and the construction of transgenderism as a ‘modern trend’ created by media and social media. The discursive resources used in othering transgender people overlap with those that have long been used in the offline denigration of sexual minority groups. We conclude that sexual and gender non-conformity is responded to with a limited set of tropes that delegitimise and other non-conforming people in culturally recognisable ways. We note that the framing of effective resistance to anti-transgender, othering online talk is not straightforward but calls for creative, evidence-based, contextually-informed discursive labour.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: C800 Psychology
L300 Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences > Dept. Criminology and Sociology
REF UoA Output Collections > REF2021 UoA21: Sociology
Depositing User: Ben Colliver
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2018 10:44
Last Modified: 03 Dec 2018 16:32
URI: http://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/6672

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