MUSEUM OF TRANSOLOGYCollaborative Unit
Last week my friend told me that there is an exhibition called “MUSEUM OF TRANSOLOGY” in LCF, so I went there immediately, thank god everything there is so helpful.
Here is an introduction of it: The UK’s trans communities are increasingly vibrant, visible and confident about sharing our stories. Trans people are coming out, finding each other and organizing Pride events, but no matter how bold and brave we are, we cannot reverse the erasure of ‘transcestry’ in museums.
Historically, trans lives have been hidden for reasons of survival, by either ‘passing’ and therefore remaining closeted, or by only expressing our gender identities in private. Trans identities have also been overlooked as sole expressions of alternative sexualities or considered as merely career strategies employed to outsmart gender-specific work regulations. It is therefore extremely difficult to confidently locate “theirstory’ retrospectively, because, in reality, our transcestry has been hidden, unidentified, ignored, forgotten and, in many cases, lost.
The erasure of transcestry ends here with the Museum Of Transology. Comprising more than 120 objects and handwritten labels, the collection is as diverse as the trans experience itself, yet shares narratives of hope, despair, ambition, confidence and desire. These narratives have been printed in this catalogue unedited, so as to retain the authentic voices of the authors. In order for these objects to be preserved for future generations, the collection needs a permanent home in a UK museum, where it can be cared for properly. To write out transcestry is one thing: to write it back in will make theirstory.
Although the scale is small, the content is very rich. Basically, the exhibition has been divided into 3 parts. Firstly showing some transvestites’ personal effects with tags and play transgender interview videos, the second part is some documents from transgenders, finally, goes to their medical treatment. I’d like to choose some impressive works to share and discuss.
‘This lipstick was from my wonderful sister who was the first family member to accept and support my transition.’ Also in the video of the interview’ My Generation’ , the interviewee said:’ I’m so jealous of transvestites supported by family, their life would be easier.
‘What Mother Nature didn’t give me…’ transvestites believe they were born in a wrong body, they need to find who they are.
‘These are from my first set of underwear(unworn)! I was so happy to be able to wear normal undies :)’
The transsexual operation is a long-term thing，after surgery, they have to change all documents, have to go to start BA again. This letter came fromHM Passport Office, it said that if Miss. Levellan wanna change her title to Mr, she needs to provide a letter from her doctor or consultant confirming that her orientation to the male gender is expected to be permanent. But the staff who wrote to Levellan was already calling her ‘ Mr’, how sweet. 🙂
‘I started taking Testogel on Transgender day of Rememberance(20th of November)2014. I was looking forward to taking it for so long. I’m very happy with my deeper voice and some facial hair. Today is 23rd of July 2016.’
The use of hormones and surgical procedures by some trans people are critical to their wellbeing. Navigating the pathway to treatment can be complex and fraught with emotional anxiety. In October 2015, the UK Trans InFo Survey reported that 14% of people on the UK’s specialty Gender Identity Clinic waiting lists had been waiting for over 52 weeks, and 65% waited over 18 weeks. This means 79% of trans patients’ treatment is in breach of NHS guidelines. According to the Trans Needs Assessment Report 2015, some trans people and clinicians are unaware referrals no longer need to be made via mental health services, despite being provided inside mental health service facilities. Four in ten users were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their pathway to care and treatment. ‘Negative experiences reported by service users included waiting times and delays, administrative errors, travel distance, disempowerment, and a lack of clarity about the care pathway. These issues were also reported by some stakeholders, including clinicians.’ The Transgender Equality Inquiry 2016 concludes that ‘The NHS is letting down trans people: it is failing in its legal duty under the Equality Act.’
This is the most impressive one. The guy who is holding a bottle is a transgender people. His breast has been cut of during a transsexual operation and now soaked by Faure Marin.This photo calls me a strong sense of admiration.
All in all, I feel like transvestites have always been treated unfairly. It takes a lot of courage and risk (because it can be very dangerous) to do a transsexual operation, I admire their backbone for find who themselves are.