Giving Voice to the Once-Silent

From The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/12/fashion/12gimlet.html?scp=2&sq=amos&st=cse

The Gimlet Eye
Giving Voice to the Once-Silent
Deidre Schoo for The New York Times

Amos Mac, left, a founder of Original Plumbing, a San Francisco transmale zine, at work in Brooklyn.

By GUY TREBAY
Published: August 11, 2010

SAN FRANCISCO

“WE figured we’ll print 500 copies and they’ll take months to sell,” Rocco Kayiatos said the other day, referring to Original Plumbing, a quarterly he started a little over a year ago with a friend, Amos Mac.

“We just thought there was a need because the world is pretty much ignorant of the existence of transmen,” said Mr. Kayiatos, a poet and rapper who performs under the name Katastrophe and who, like Mr. Mac, identifies himself as a transman.

It turned out that Mr. Kayiatos’s assumptions were both right and wrong. It is true that a lot of people remain uninformed, if not about the existence of transmen — to use an umbrella term for someone born female who identifies as male (think of Chaz Bono) — then about the variety of the experiences that fall under the rubric and transmen’s growing cultural presence.

Those people probably don’t live in the Bay Area, where the zine is published, and where transmen have been gathering over the past decade in numbers no official agency has counted. But the scope of the population can be guessed at from its visibility on the local scene.

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/12/fashion/12gimlet.html?scp=2&sq=amos&st=cse

I love ‘Zines and Blogs because DIY is the way we have a say in defining ourselves and what is important to us.  They are an alternative to the corporate propaganda machines.

Posted in Art. 2 Comments »

2 Responses to “Giving Voice to the Once-Silent”

  1. Anna Says:

    | “We just thought there was a need because the world is
    | pretty much ignorant of the existence of transmen,” said Mr.
    | Kayiatos, a poet and rapper who performs under the name
    | Katastrophe and who, like Mr. Mac, identifies himself as a
    | transman.
    |
    | It turned out that Mr. Kayiatos’s assumptions were both right
    | and wrong. It is true that a lot of people remain uninformed, if
    | not about the existence of transmen — to use an umbrella term
    | for someone born female who identifies as male (think of Chaz
    | Bono) — then about the variety of the experiences that fall
    | under the rubric and transmen’s growing cultural presence.
    |
    | Those people probably don’t live in the Bay Area, where the zine
    | is published, and where transmen have been gathering over the
    | past decade in numbers no official agency has counted. But the
    | scope of the population can be guessed at from its visibility on
    | the local scene.

    So these guys, at least one of whom makes his living from being seen as a transman, want the public to be aware of transmen. And the writer says that is the case in the Bay Area. But what of the guys who just want to be seen as guys? Or the butch lesbians? Guess the Bay Area isn’t for them any longer.

    Did you check out the zine website ( http://www.originalplumbing.com/ )? “No one knows I’m a Transsexual” T-shirt, lots of nude pictures, lots of “queer” this and that. Did you notice their agony aunt, “Julie”, formerly “Officer Faggot”in some drama; how does that play with your female identity? Did you think about the title; couldn’t be anti-phalloplasty or hysterectomy could they?

    Just as with transgender, of which transman is spin-off, they are lying that their term is an umbrella for anyone transitioning or transitioned to male. It isn’t, its for “another genderists”. And, by saying they are “female-to-male” they indicate they are, as ever with transgenderists, set against the evidence that we are born this way.

    How about some solidarity with men-born-transsexual?

    • Suzan Says:

      I give props to people who do things, especially DIY projects like “Zines. For what it is worth they do not seem to be telling any one their way is the only way.


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