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Developing an authentic sex: deconstructing developmental–psychological discourses of transgenderism in a clinical setting
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2014 (English)In: Feminism and Psychology, ISSN 0959-3535, E-ISSN 1461-7161, Vol. 24, no 1, 20-36 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The paper is based on a broader study of the use of discourses of transgenderism among sex-reassignment evaluators in Sweden. In this paper we explore how a developmental–psychological discourse was reproduced by the evaluators in their discursive negotiations of transsexualism. We found that maturity and authenticity are two key concepts that illuminate how the developmental–psychological discourse both clashes with and works together with a medical–pathological discourse of transgenderism. The developmental–psychological discourse can help to produce a definition of transgenderism that is more diverse regarding male/female dichotomies. This in turn can create a wider range of possible subject positions for patients who are seeking help. The developmental–psychological discourse also imposes additional limitations regarding the subject positions available to transgender persons through a demand for maturity and for having gone through all of the steps in the expected identity development process. The developmental–psychological repertoire casts transgenderism as an identity crisis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2014. Vol. 24, no 1, 20-36 p.
Keyword [en]
transgender, developmental psychology; medical psychology; transgender politics, sex reassignment evaluator, authenticity, age, identity, Sweden
National Category
Social Psychology
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-83557DOI: 10.1177/0959353513510653ISI: 000330772500002OAI: diva2:669099
Available from: 2013-12-03 Created: 2013-12-03 Last updated: 2014-04-07Bibliographically approved

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Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, HannaNordlund, LisaKaiser, Niclas
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