Edited By sj Miller and Nelson M. Rodriguez
Chapter Fourteen: Undone and (Mis)Recognized: Disorienting Experiences of a Queer, Trans* Educator
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Undone and (Mis)Recognized: Disorienting Experiences of a Queer, Trans* Educator
ERICH N. PITCHER
Laugh and cry and tell stories. Sad stories about bodies stolen, bodies no longer here. Enraging stories about the false images, devastating lies, untold violence. Bold, brash stories about reclaiming our bodies and changing the world.
—ELI CLARE, 1999, P. 60
Queer and trans* histories and memories are important because of the systemic erasure of our narratives. My stories are about being undone and (mis)recognized. Contained within these stories are traces of stolen bodies, bodies no longer here. Some of us were not meant to survive (Lorde, 1995). So I tell these episodic stories with all the privileges contained within my life’s history, a white, emerging middle-class, bourgeoning academic who is perceived as “male.” My femininity, and my being assigned female at birth, are often negated. This negation is usually attributed to my queerness because of transmisogynistic tropes like being a “man in a dress.” But my queerness is often visible, both recognized and (mis)recognized.
I am visible when walking my dogs in the early morning hours in my neighborhood, holding my partner’s hand. We are two men, queering the public space. But I am undone in moments when my genderqueer trans man partner and I go out to eat and the server balks at our desire for a single check. As if our...
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