Gegevens uit Bibliotheek

Extraordinary body-self narratives. Sport and physical activity in the lives of transgender people (INTERN).

Elling-Machartzki, A.
Leisure Studies, doi: 10.1080/02614367.2015.1128474

Physical activity and sports can be regarded as particularly challenging social practices for transgender people, regarding the centrality of the body, gendered structures like changing rooms and competitions, and normative gender ideologies. In the emerging body of literature on transgender people and sport, the main focus has been on mainstream, competitive sports as non-inclusive. In this article, the author presents body-self narratives in physical activity and sports (PA/S) during diferent stages of their gender transition, based on interviews with 12 transgender people in the Netherlands. The results confrm that mainstream sports and physical activity spaces like swimming pools are often experienced as relatively unsafe by transgender people,  both pre- and post transition and especially during the ‘liminal’ transition phase. However, apart from places of shame for or control of the ‘wrong’ body-object and places of felt/enacted stigma, the body-self narratives also indicated that PA/S had been important enabling and empowering activities at diferent times in the lives of transgender people. For example, regarding gender (dis)identifcation or as coping strategy in de pre-transition phase and for ultimately gaining body-subject awareness, gender recognition and pride of the ‘right’ body-self.