A Marathon Search for My Deserved Body: How a Chinese Male-to-Female Manages Gender Nonconformity

Fung Kei Cheng

Abstract


The hegemony of dichotomous gender identity dominates the discourse on the issues of sex and gender. Through this means, irrational fear brings about prejudice, stigmatisation, discrimination, and exclusion towards individuals who suffer from gender nonconformity. Despite relevant substantial literature, there is a paucity of research on Chinese transgender people. This case study investigates how a Chinese trans-woman deals with her gender incongruence and anxiety through sex realignment surgery. It conducts in-depth, semi-structured interviews, and processes data by means of interpretative phenomenological analysis, with the help of a computerised qualitative data analysis package. It also carries out member checking to enrich triangulation effects. The results unmask the way the participant is being incrementally liberated from being a pretend man in her current state of half-man-non-woman, and her efforts in achieving the gender that she desires. This study reveals factors that influence the embodiment of bodily integrity and psychological adjustments against distress induced by gender nonconformity, therefore supporting the development of a gender-affirming society that benefits both individuals and public interests.

Keywords


bodily integrity; gender dysphoria; stigma management; transphobia; transwoman

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17583/generos.2020.6206

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