Special Issue: Trans Victorians

deadline for submissions: 
October 15, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Victorian Review
contact email: 

The Victorian Review invites submissions for its special issue devoted to Trans Victorians. From the Chevalier/Chevalière D’Eon, Fanny and Stella, Dr. James Miranda Barry, and Vernon Lee, to the intersecting identities found in gender diverse side shows, including Madame Clofullia and Julia Pastrana, and the political cross-dressing of the Welsh Rebecca Riots, the Victorian era was populated by all manner of non-binary and gender expansive slippages. At the same time, Richard von Krafft-Ebing’s conflation of queer sexual orientation and trans gender identity and expression became part of the scientific foundation that informed cisnormative and heteronormative standards not only in medicine and the law, but the popular imagination. This special issue seeks to explore the overt and covert constructions of resistance to the constructions of more rigid gender binaries throughout Victorian Britain and abroad.

Recent critical work in Transgender/Trans Studies has begun to reconsider narratives of “transness” within structures of intersecting identities that focus on race, class, national identity, ability, colonialism and imperialism, and has begun to tease out the mis-readings and differences between sexual orientation and gender identity and gender expression. Within post-colonial contexts, trans research has also begun to interrogate the British global mis-readings of gender diversity among various groups in the colonies such as the hijras in India and tangata ira tane and takatapui (Maori) in New Zealand. How might we approach Victorian Trans Studies while recognizing that the term “trans” or “transgender” and the meanings we now grant to them did not exist in the Victorian period?

Possible topics may include (but are not limited to):

Trans Representation in Victorian Literature (all genres) including Supportive and/or Derisive Depictions

Gender Diversity in Colonial Contexts

British and European Authoritative Readings of Trans

British and European Embodiments of Trans

Trans and Sex Crimes

Trans and Medicine

Trans and Law

Trans and Religion

Trans Communities and Cultures

Cross-Dressing as Theatrical Performance

Cross-Dressing as Political Theatre

Cross-Dressing as Embracing Trans Identity

The Spectacle of Trans Embodiment

Trans Celebrity/Trans Legends

Essays must be between 5000 and 8000 words and formatted according to MLA (8th edition) guidelines. Please submit manuscripts to Ardel Haefele-Thomas (guest editor):

Electronic Submissions: athomas@ccsf.edu

Mailed Submissions:

Dr. Ardel Haefele-Thomas, Chair

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies

City College of San Francisco

50 Phelan Avenue

Box C11

San Francisco, CA 94112