Events Calendar
Nov 24
14:00 - 16:00
Beyond the Gender Agenda

Recent incidents like the Guardian letter signed by academics who claim they are being 'harassed over their research into transgender issues', and who are concerned about the proposed move to self-identification in the GRA consultation process, suggest that feminists/women's rights and trans rights positions are politically oppositional, mutually exclusive and antagonistic. This session takes place within the context of an emerging conflict over the meaning and value of gender. On the one hand, some feminists suggest that gender is inherently oppressive/harmful; they fear the annihilation of women's rights and the dismantling of an anti-gender politics. On the other hand, some trans activists are arguing that legal gender and sex should be defined solely through self-determination. However, in this conflict, crucial struggles, positionalities and politics are being erased: what happens to a wider feminist politics that challenges gender relations, while supporting new ways of living; or the synergies between women's rights and trans rights activisms? What common ground can we find to address systemic oppression? 

This session is an invitation to rethink what it means to refuse this impoverished understanding of the current clash between two seemingly opposing positions. We want to bring to the fore positions that are left out by this binary understanding of the existing debate, such as positions that fall within the wider queer, lesbian and trans feminism spectrum. We are hoping to use this event as a space for a feminist discussion about the wider impact of changes to existing policy and want to particularly provide a space for people who feel they are caught between opposing poles in the current debate.The format of this event will be a short introduction by Davina Cooper and Flora Renz on the GRA consultation and key legal issues, wider gender politics, and the FLaG project followed by a moderated discussion with all attendees. 

The event is free to attend, but please RSVP using eventbrite:

For any inquiries about the event please contact Flora Renz (


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Eliot College,
University of Kent,
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Last Updated: 10/01/2012