'Transgender Marxism' Review
Jordan Levi
by Jordan Levi
39 min read



If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s recognizing patterns, and I’ve been involved in the gender discussion long enough to spot the common “debate tactics” (re: logical fallacies) that queer theorists use. More often than not, those tend to be: conflation, avoiding the issue, and ad hominems. Of course, it’s hard to believe someone’s arguing in good faith if all three of these crop up, so I usually start off hoping they won’t, but end up sorely disappointed just as often. I tend to have a little less optimism when dealing with random Twitter accounts, but a little more when I come across published pieces. I hope that editors and publishers will do their best to root out these kinds of reasoning errors, but that doesn’t always end up being the case.

Transgender Marxism unsurprisingly shows all the signs of bad faith argumentation. I can’t remember exactly how I found out about this book — it was more than likely through a Twitter thread or a group chat message — but I first looked at the publisher’s webpage for it maybe a month before it dropped. My first thought was, “there’s no way you can soundly reconcile these two ideas,” because Marxism’s a materialist philosophy and one of the core components of queer theory is social constructionism — the belief that everything’s more or less a social construct — which is purely idealist. Still, I hoped the authors would make an honest attempt at addressing this clear conflict. Not only did they not do so, they deliberately avoided defining those and other key terms involved in this discussion, which should be step one whenever key terms are contested.

At over 400 pages total, you’d think there’d be a considerable amount to take away from it, but it’s almost entirely hand waving and fluff. The Introduction and Afterword alone are disrespectfully long at over 40 pages each, following the same theme as the body: a bunch of individual essays that seem thrown together without any logic behind their sequence or progression. The only very loose thread tying them all together is their relation to transgender and/or class struggle, but I don’t see any rationale behind the chosen order of the essays in either the Introduction, the body, or the Afterword. More importantly, it’s riddled with the logical fallacies I mentioned earlier, and the authors weakly define the few key terms they even attempt to.

It’s funny to me that queer theorists constantly accuse the gender critical side of conflating sex and gender because — aside from the complete misunderstanding of our position that claim shows — they do exactly that whenever they feel it’s beneficial. This book does the same thing, repeatedly conflating sex with gender and “gender identity,”[1][13][28][62] as well as conflating sex with sex characteristics.[16][86] Without distinguishing between these concepts, it becomes difficult if not impossible to have any productive discussion. This failure of distinction also leads to them claiming that binary sex is a “colonial social construct”[21][35][36][73][81][82] — conflating social recognition with social construction — aside from the baseless ad hominem that sex is “racialized.”[15][81]

The authors write with confidence about babies being born without a “gender,”[72] them being “assigned a gender at birth,”[50][51][56][70] people being “misgendered,”[29][53] and of the state “policing gender,”[23] without ever defining the term “gender” themselves. It’s impossible to know what the writers are referring to if they avoid actually defining the term “gender.” It’s equally impossible if they consciously do the same for the term “transgender.”[22][37][78] They say dysphoria isn’t the only thing that makes someone trans,[4][25][77] but that doesn’t get us much closer to any coherent definition. It’s useless to talk about transgender oppression,[2][4][6][10][27] the “violent enforcement” of “cisgender norms,”[74] or to retroactively trans Marsha P. Johnson[30] if you never define exactly what transgender means — especially when the only definition you give of “transition” is so broad it’s effectively meaningless.[24]

It’s a given that the authors believe TiMs are women, so it’s no surprise that they consider radical feminism “incoherent” and doubt its ability to represent “women in general.”[7] The real shock is that they consider the defining characteristic of womanhood to be sexual objectification by men[22] — another term they avoid defining. This seems to come back to their conflation of different concepts — this time womanhood and “femininity” — but I wouldn’t consider sexual objectification by men to be the defining characteristic of femininity, either.

Another ad hominem they throw out multiple times is the myth that only right-wingers oppose queer theorists,[14][18][20] all while hand waving away concerns about rapid onset gender dysphoria[26][40] and implying that hormone replacement therapy isn’t harmful.[5] I’m sure at least one of the authors has seen left-wing women speak out against those very two things online, but I’d bet it’s hard gauging male sexual objectification through a phone screen.

A few curveballs are claims that heterosexuality isn’t natural,[47][71][83] that Marxism and/or communism can be “queer,”[9][32][75] and that gender non-conformity is “anti-capitalist.”[36][43] All that being said, I have no problem giving credit where it’s due, so I’ll acknowledge that there are a handful of quotes that are very good when taken in isolation,[45][54][79][80] but — overall — this book seems more like a money grab than a serious attempt at a Marxist contribution.

I’ve added specific quotations that I felt like addressing below, with my responses in bold. Fair warning: this section’s around 1,000 words and that section came to about 9,500. Whether you decide to read that or not, I appreciate you making it this far, whether you’re friend or foe. ‘Til next time!


[1] “our genders exist at once in normative and abstracted terms (women do this, men do that …), and intimately concrete ones (‘I have been on HRT for nine months now …’).” - Pg. 18, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— They’re using ‘gender’ confusingly here. First, they use it in a sense of being based on things men and women do and not something they are. This shows they’re not using it as a synonym of sex or gender identity in the first instance, since — in my experience — TRAs argue that gender identity is something you are, not something you do. TRAs would call what you do ‘gender expression,’ so that seems to be the sense they’re trying to convey here. Where it gets confusing is that, in the second usage, they imply that HRT also affects gender. Obviously HRT can’t alter ‘gender expression,’ (since gender expression is strictly how someone dresses, their mannerisms, etc. to my knowledge), so there are two possibilities in this second case. The first is that they’re referring to gender identity (which would make no sense, since TRAs — to my knowledge — wouldn’t argue that HRT could have an effect on someone’s gender identity). The second is that they’re using gender as a synonym for sex (which isn’t affected by HRT, either, but I’ve seen plenty of TRAs argue otherwise). Either way, they’d be telescoping two different senses, which is intellectually lazy (though possibly intentional). They need to distinguish between these two for more clarity.

[2] “Transgender life is harsh enough that many are easily led to conclude that our conditions are beyond redemption; that no centre-left party or Third Sector trend can be relied upon to truly loosen the grip of oppression.” - Pg. 18, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— What oppression? Not being able to use the bathroom of the opposite sex? I need some examples here. I don’t doubt we might agree on some of them, but I’ve literally seen TRAs argue that homosexuality and heterosexuality are oppression.

[3] “Our struggle for political emancipation has become understood as one progression within a broader process of class war, and our transitions as reshaping the demands of social reproduction.” - Pg. 19, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— “Political emancipation”? Is allowing children to thin their bones with Lupron “political emancipation”? Is that a “progression within a broader process of class war”? I’d argue that it isn’t. Again, I’d need specifics here on what transgender people’s “political emancipation” entails for this writer. I’d loosely agree that “transitions,” e.g., cosmetic surgeries, “reshape the demands of social reproduction,” but is it (more or less) reshaped in a positive direction? Again, I’d argue that it isn’t.

[4] “Transition, too, must come to be understood by revolutionaries as a response to its own form of hunger. The longings that drive so many to reforge lives for ourselves that leave us thoroughly proletarianised, or cast out, rendered surplus. Those cravings and cavings-in that clinicians have long attempted to desiccate under the catch-all term ‘dysphoria’.” - Pg. 27, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— “Hunger” for what? They’re implying that, whatever this hunger is, is at least sometimes mischaracterized as dysphoria, but we’d need this hunger to be pointed out to be able to tell the difference.

[5] “For us, the flows of hormones which can condemn or revive us are no more natural than capitalism, and no more sinister than filling our bellies with food.” - Pg. 27, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— HRT can increase the risk of cancer and blood clots, so you’re not wrong about the “condemn,” but pretty far off on the “revive,” at least in a concrete, measurable sense. Flows of hormones are objectively more natural than capitalism, since they naturally happen and capitalism naturally doesn’t. HRT is objectively sinister, since it can cause multiple medical complications.

[6] “When not actively vilified, or included as a polite footnote, many assume an interest in trans people thanks to our marginalisation. As we are more likely to experience poverty, destitution, engage in sex work, experience abuse and mistreatment by wider society, and the police and the criminal justice system, we tend to be more radical than the general population, and thus a source of special Interest.” - Pg. 29, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— Get off the cross. They have yet to even define what a trans person is, and it seems like most that claim to be are middle-class, mentally ill, white male coomers. Now, if you think this group is just a bunch of porn sick frauds, then that changes the entire dynamic, but we’d need an objective definition of trans before we can discuss this.

[7] “The figure of the trans woman interloper, disrupting otherwise stable and harmonious relations within the community of women, functions to relieve radical feminism of the indignity of acknowledging the incoherence of the radical feminist project as such. Conveniently, the trans woman as pest distracts from long-running doubts around radical feminism’s claimed ability to speak for, represent, and defend the sanctity of women-in-general: women’s rights, women’s interests, women’s spaces and women’s knowledge. Here, the grit of trans women is abraded into the pearl of a rear-guard defence of female universalism. What the earlier feminist movement had sought to destabilise now becomes anxiously reasserted. If one is inclined to wonder how successfully the predominantly white, professionally-trained, and well-off ladies who have always dominated feminist ‘leadership’ might serve in that role, those self-appointed representatives find themselves with a readymade riposte: ‘Well, we will at least do a better job than males’. By ‘males’, of course, they mean trans women.

Our answer to this is simple enough. Rather than a second-order modality of feminine embodiment, we insist that trans women face down the same imperatives of capitalist exploitation, exacerbated by patriarchal relations, as anyone else.” - Pgs. 31 - 32, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— They claim RadFem leadership has been predominantly white and well-off. Whether that’s the case or not, most working-class women of color would side with RadFems over this RadLib idea that a man is just as oppressed as a woman the second he decides to start using she/her pronouns. I agree that TiMs “face down the same imperatives of capitalist exploitation … as anyone else,” but they don’t “face down the same imperatives of capitalist exploitation” as women because they’re men, otherwise they’d be “cis,” not “trans.”

[8] “For this reason, gender’s temporal dynamics are not static, but constantly revolutionised by transformations in how we organise society collectively. This is constantly denied by any number of research fields, from sexology to evolutionary psychology, committed to ‘peeling away’ gender until we reach a sturdier and more fixed core of ‘sex’. Yet these efforts are continuously outstripped by the efforts of trans culture. Trans people have taken a more practical approach of continuous adjustments, using the understandings of the natural sciences as a point of departure, rather than a final word.” - Pg. 35, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— I’ve seen countless TRAs argue that sex is a spectrum, so they’re far from “using the understandings of the natural sciences as a point of departure.”

[9] “There is no critique of value that succeeds without becoming queer.” - Pg. 36, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— This is self-important nonsense. Critiques of value have nothing to do with sexuality.

[10] “Through Marx’s critique, we can develop an understanding of the interconnection between the loftier abstractions of political economy and the often brutal demands of transition. Between the seemingly abstract operations of risk, value, speculation, psychologisticly driven changes in the market value of assets in money prices, the movement of wages, unemployment, growth rates, and gross domestic product (usually apprehended in the dry statistics of national income accounts) – and with the violence, prejudice, and exclusion we experience on a grinding, day-to-day level.” - Pg. 36, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— I see no “interconnection between the loftier abstractions of political economy and the often brutal demands of transition.” People regularly get suspended on social media for using the correct pronouns for a trans person’s sex. What marginalized group has ever had that kind of power? Again, they’d need to define what transgender means because I’d agree that Brazilian TiMs experience those things on a day-to-day level, but not a middle-aged, white, American executive who only cross-dresses one day a week.

[11] “The Black Lives Matter campaign across the United States was overtly a movement against police violence. But over the past three years, this movement has also come closer to challenging the foundations of property rights than any other political moment in living memory.” - Pg. 37, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— Define “living memory,” for one, but, for two, I’d argue that BLM hasn’t challenged the foundations of property rights at all.

[12] “The problem with so-called class-reductionist perspectives is that to reduce to class often enough means a failure to explain how class divisions arise historically, or are sustained.” - Pg. 39, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— I disagree. Marx and Engels did a great job at explaining how class divisions arose.

[13] “What other accounts of transgender lives have identified as a transition in epistemic regimes in the social, scientific, and medical understanding of gender; we would identify as the weighty historical corollary of a transition in property regimes, working patterns, unwaged labour, family structures, and domestic life. Transition requires an eruption in all of these.” Pgs. 39 - 40, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— “Scientific and medical understanding of gender”? Either they mean sex or they’re dumb.

[14] “On the one hand, the casualisation of labour has made it less likely that any given trans person will require a singular ‘professional persona’, to last their whole working lifetime. On the other, this same process also guts the institutions which might previously have been called upon to offer some semblance of protection from employer prejudices. Casualisation places us at risk of disposability for any number of the commonplace reasons that trans people frequently encounter.

It’s at this point that trans people often find themselves viewed askance, excluded from broad sectors of monetised economic activity by virtue of a stigmatised identity, and often out of step with heterosexual society’s expectations of their birth kin. Reactionaries have cast the rise of Transgender Marxism as one hydra of a beast named ‘gender ideology’. A malign force of delusion, confusing the youth and gutting previously sturdy norms. But in truth, gender has come to be a topic of such attention, and explicit confusion, thanks to a disintegration of material circumstances – one inaugurated by the right and since officiated by liberals of every possible orientation.” - Pg. 46, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— I can’t tell if they’re agreeing that some people are becoming transgender as a false solution to their material circumstances or not. Either way, it isn’t just reactionaries that see issues with this — plenty of radicals do, too.

[15] “The chaos of gender nonconformity is reconceived and swept under the organising logic of a racialised, normatively teleological binary transition.” - Pg. 48, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— How many end results do “transitions” lead to? You can “become” “FtM,” “MtF,” and what else? Also, “racialised”? What’s “racialised” about being male or female?

[16] “Trans historian Jules Gill-Peterson notes how contemporary discussions of ‘gender identity’ largely efface its origins as a conservative response intended to suture over the epistemic crisis of sex as a clinical category. Rather than appearing through an emancipatory concern, ‘gender’ in this sense served as a sexological speculation, ushered in by eugenic experiments on trans and intersex children and adults. To their evident horror, clinicians discovered that neither genotype, gonads, hormones, genitals, internal organs, nor secondary anatomical features proved decisive. No one isolatable feature could provide the foundational, determining, and unambiguous influence on which binary sexuation could depend. As such, frameworks ranging from pathological reduction of transsexual experiences to the sensual impact of ‘dysphoria’, to the later framework of ‘Disorders of Sex Development’ to account for intersex variations, formed a rear-guard reaction to sustain a conceptual binary.” - Pgs. 48 - 49, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— You just named secondary sex characteristics. How many ducts are there that can develop after sexual differentiation? Are there any besides the Wolffian and Müllerian ducts? Which of these fully develops is the one isolatable feature you’re looking for.

[17] “Not every trans life fits the teleological model of ‘binary transition’; in fact, very few ever do.” - Pg. 50, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— I ask again: how many “genders” is it possible to transition into?

[18] “The wrath ‘trans ideology’ triggers among reactionaries is not simply mindless contempt. It is not reducible to psychodrama. Instead, capitalism’s right wing treats apparent breaches of continuity in the operation of its private households for good reason.” - Pg. 51, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— Plenty of radicals object to the irrationality of gender ideology, not just reactionaries.

[19] “Property appears as natural through patterns of ownership and entitlement, both of which are simultaneously deeply gendered and racialised. And so it is that those abdicating their expected role for new, self- fashioned positions are read as a mortal threat to the continuity of capitalism.” - Pg. 52, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— Property ownership patterns aren’t “gendered,” they’re sexed. Also, “transitions” in the UK don’t affect property inheritance. Why don’t TRAs campaign to change that, since it isn’t abdicating property in that way?

[20] “Let’s sum up: the convulsive rise of the Global Right has placed the transitioner alongside the migrant as a key symptom and agent of ‘cultural degeneracy’. The situation is best summarised in the term innovated in response to a legal defence frequently mounted by murderers in the United States whose justification for their violence is that their heterosexuality was undermined by their attraction to a woman who turned out to be trans: ‘trans panic’. This panic appears on a grand scale, as well as in these singular episodes: the right determines us a threat to all fixity and normality, justifying both bursts of explosive, extrajudicial violence, and the systemic deprivation of rights and basic dignity from state officials.” - Pg. 52, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— “A woman who turned out to be trans”? You mean “a man who turned out to be delusional.” And, again, plenty of radicals oppose gender ideology.

[21] “Once, a binary conception of the world was imposed worldwide by British, French, Spanish, and Portuguese colonialism; as much through colonial law-making as massacres by European explorers.” - Pg. 52, Jules Joanne Gleeson and Elle O’Rourke

— Every indigenous group knew there were only two sexes and even had gender roles prior to european colonization.

[22] “One of the earliest theorisations of ‘gender socialisation’ in feminist theory is found in Catharine MacKinnon’s ‘Feminism, Method, Marxism and the State’. MacKinnon presents socialisation theory as a radical feminist intervention into socialist feminism which she argued had until that point located gender in the labour of (biological) reproduction, presenting sexuality as neutral/natural while ignoring men’s exploitation of women through (hetero)sexual relations. ‘Gender socialization’, she writes, ‘is the process through which women come to identify themselves as sexual beings, as beings which exist for men. It is that process through which women internalise (make their own) a male image of their sexuality as their identity as women’. Womanhood, to MacKinnon, is defined through coercion into heterosexuality. In this view, the defining characteristic of women’s shared subjectivity is powerlessness at the hands of men, as reinforced through sexual objectification.

MacKinnon’s radical feminist analysis spoke (and speaks) truth to many women’s experiences of male domination and traumatisation at the hands of men. For these women, to be female is to exist as object and victim; gender socialisation is a unidirectional and non-agentic process, to be resisted through feminist organising but with little potential for subversion from within. So while trans-inclusive radical feminisms have existed since its advent, and MacKinnon herself has expressed support for trans women’s self-identification, many of the underlying assumptions of radical feminist socialisation theory lend themselves readily to transantagonistic conclusions when applied outside the realm of cisgender experience. If womanhood is defined by forcible sexual submission, what positive content could trans women see that draws them towards a female identification? And if trans men have experienced sexual assault at the hands of men – as most of us have – do these experiences forever mark us as, in some sense, female? Without an understanding of agency, and of gendering as a multidirectional process, there is little room for trans people to legibly exist outside of our initial assignment. According to this ‘old school’ perspective, female-assigned trans people will always be seen as victims of our socialisation, and male-assigned trans people will forever benefit from theirs – at least until gender is abolished.

The more classically feminist varieties of trans-exclusive radical feminists (TERFs) often point to such ‘socialisation’ arguments to suggest that trans people’s self-identification as our genders could not possibly reflect ‘material reality’. While these arguments may not seem to dignify a response, it’s worth reproducing an example to illustrate the tenor of the current debate within feminism. Referring to Shon Faye, a UK-based trans woman and activist, Canadian feminist Meghan Murphy writes:

Faye has only been living as a self-defined transwoman for two years, meaning that for 27 years, he [sic] was socialised as a male, and offered all the power and privilege men are under patriarchy. He [sic] has no idea what it feels like to fear pregnancy, to be talked down to or over, to be discriminated against in the workplace, to live in fear of rape or abuse in private and in public, from the time he [sic] was a child.

This is, of course, both empirically and experientially false. For instance, trans women experience sexual violence and intimate partner violence at rates higher than those typical for cis women.[8] Likewise, while trans men’s relationships to male power are hardly straightforward, many of us can describe instances in which being read and treated ‘as a man’ has resulted in privileges granted that were previously denied.[9]

Similarly, trans-exclusive feminists have pointed to essentialisms within trans politics and rhetoric in order to argue that trans identity is necessarily bioessentialist, and therefore both misogynistic and scientifically questionable. In her review of the controversy surrounding J. Michael Bailey’s The Man Who Would Be Queen, Alice Dreger attributes trans criticisms of the homosexuality/autogynephilia typology of transsexualism to a ‘feminine essence’ theory of transness, which relies on a belief in innate gender identity to justify transition. It’s certainly true that there are some strands of contemporary trans discourse which do appeal to a certain bioessentialism, in order to argue for the validity of trans experiences, presenting transgender neurochemistry as an uncomplicated ‘point of fact’. These ‘trans liberal’ arguments attempt to establish trans people as just another natural fact. These assertions are both scientifically contested and politically questionable, but adjudicating this dispute is not my main concern here. It will suffice to say here that these views by no means represent the totality of trans understandings of gender. While many trans people hold essentialist understandings of gender identity, one could equally say that so do the majority of cis people.” - Pgs. 60 - 63, Noah Zazanis

— Womanhood isn’t defined by sexual objectification. That’s the most sexist definition I’ve ever heard. Women are adult human females. I dug through reference 8 and saw no comparison of sexual violence and intimate partner violence rates between women and TiMs, only between TiMs and the regular US population. Reference 9 is a very weak anecdote. Also, if your argument isn’t that people have “gendered brains/souls,” then what do you think makes someone trans? They conveniently avoid answering this.

[23] “Models, enacted experiences, and instances of direct tuition do not occur spontaneously – cisgender norms cannot be treated as a given. They are reproduced daily in the household, the school, the medical facility, etc. by human action, with varying degrees of intention attached. What’s more, they are enforced through the violent regulatory practices of the state, which literally polices gender through the criminalisation of sex work and through targeted police violence against and incarceration of Black and Brown trans people.” - Pg. 68, Noah Zazanis

— What does sex work have to do with “gender”? How does arresting sex workers police it?

[24] “To the extent that models of trans existence are presented at all in conventional society, they’re most often treated as laughable or tragic – an outcome to be avoided at all costs. In contrast, the modelling available within the trans support group (and in other forms of trans community) proves that transition(26) is possible, and can produce desired effects.” - Pg. 70, Noah Zazanis

“26. In using ‘transition’, I am including all means of medical and social transition, including changing names and pronouns, or simply coming out as trans.” - Pg. 76

— This is insane because they’re saying they include changing names and pronouns or even just saying you’re trans as “transitioning.” Of course changing your name and pronouns or just saying “I’m trans” is possible — who could possibly think otherwise? More importantly, though, this definition of transition is too broad to be meaningful in the first place.

[25] “Just as cisgender society provides direct instructions for ‘appropriate’ gender conduct, trans circles provide instructions on how to be trans. These instructions vary depending on the online trans circle in question. A group of ‘transmedicalists’ may circulate a post about how dysphoria is a requirement for trans identity, and a group of trans people with different ideals may ‘quote-tweet’ or ‘reblog’ that post to make the opposite claim. None of these claimants to authoritative definitions can truly claim the last word. There is no singular aetiology of the trans experience, or a singular understanding of what being trans means to those concerned.” - Pg. 71, Noah Zazanis

— If gender dysphoria doesn’t make someone trans, then you might as well be arguing that being a trans is a choice and that anyone can be trans just by saying so.

[26] “In discussing the practices of social reproduction which manifest trans identities, we see a clear path through which trans people assist other trans people in the development of our identities. This allows for a degree of agency unrecognised by certain trans essentialisms. It further opens up some risk by acknowledging that trans people’s identities are often contingent upon our interaction with others in the trans community. To recognise this can be loaded, as career journalists and TERF activists frequently turn to exaggerated claims of ‘social contagion’. Proponents of this moral panic claim that so-called ‘gender ideology’ grooms helpless (usually female-assigned) gender nonconforming children for recruitment into the trans cult. In a 2018 study of 250 parents of trans children recruited from an anti-trans message board, Lisa Littman refers to ‘Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria’, which she claims can arise from exposure to transgender group dynamics and transition-related advice, particularly online through social media. This, combined with parental claims regarding previous mental illness or experiences of violence, is used to claim that youth transition is a harmful coping mechanism akin to self-harm or alcohol/drug abuse.

In truth, trans community influence must be considered in the full context of the many social influences dedicated to grooming children for cisgenderism, and depicting transition as the worst of all possible outcomes. While many trans people have experienced instances of interpersonal violence, the structure of gender under capitalism is formed through violence in all cases. Trans people are not distinguished by our victimhood. It is in cases of cisgender identification that this coercion has been most effective. Through internalisation of cisgender models, enacted experiences, and lessons learned through direct tuition, all gendered subjects establish internal standards for social behaviour. Everyone attached to a given gender has learned to police themselves according to those standards. It is through an (often intentional) change of influences, and specifically through the reproductive practices that generate that influence, that individuals make room for a change in internal standards. For trans people, this provides a much-needed intervention against cisgender standards. For us, these have proven painfully repressive, and potentially impossible to meet.(29)

As such, trans practices of reproduction generate modes of influence that make possible alternate modes of living. They open new conditions of possibility for trans people’s self-realisation. This facilitates the process of transgender identity formation, and makes opportunities for transition possible – opportunities that cis society would otherwise cruelly foreclose. This represents a manifestation of agency on the part of both would-be transitioners (who seek out a trans community) and already-established trans people (who choose to reproduce trans possibilities rather than cisgender standards and norms.) By foregrounding conscious acts of reproduction in the formation of trans identities, we can bypass both trans essentialisms and cis feminist social determinisms. We can then move forward towards a historical materialism capable of thoroughly conceptualising trans existence and resistance.” Pgs. 73 - 74, Noah Zazanis

“29. Why else would we have embarked on the arduous and often personally endangering process of transition at all?” - Pg. 76

— They basically hand wave away the charge that transgenderism tends to capture young girls with mental illnesses via a social contagion similar to anorexia, bulimia, and cutting.

[27] “Trans people usually have a hard time finding work, get treated poorly in most of our jobs, and consequently end up poor. Carolyn, like many trans people, felt a deep and strong commitment to expressing her gender, even in the initial step of growing her hair long.” - Pg. 78, Michelle O’Brien

— They still haven’t defined what trans means for us to have this conversation. Also, saying long hair expresses gender proves it’s just sexist stereotypes.

[28] “Alan Bérubé’s study of the Marine Cooks and Stewards Union inaugurated the growing historical and current literature on what he calls ‘queer work’ – professions and industries where queer people helped each other get jobs, found some space to express their non-normative genders at work, reduced the risks of homophobic attack, and in some cases were favoured by employers. These jobs are those often associated with stereotyped gender roles of one’s opposite gender – specifically blue-collar labour for women, and activities like cooking, service, laundry, and food service for men.” - Pg. 80, Michelle O’Brien

— “Stereotyped gender roles of one’s opposite gender”? You mean “one’s opposite sex.”

[29] “As of January 2020, workers at Babeland are nearly three years into their first successful contract. They have remained unusually militant, at one point acting collectively to successfully get a manager fired for misgendering workers.” - Pg. 86, Michelle O’Brien

— “Misgendering”? You mean “correctly sexing.”

[30] “These networks of trans women of colour constitute forms of self-activity and survival-struggle among the lumpenproletariat. At times, this organising took an overtly political form, such as the 1970s Street Transvestite Action Revolution (STAR) organised by Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson.” - Pg. 90, Michelle O’Brien

— MPJ wasn’t trans. They repeatedly called themselves a man.

[31] “Like many people’s experience of the family, employment is an institution of gender violence and everyday coercion.” - Pg. 93, Michelle O’Brien

— “Gender violence”? Do you mean sex violence?

[32] “In short, my suggestion is that if Marxist feminism is Marxist analysis refracted through the analysis of gender, transsexual Marxism is Marxist analysis but refracted through the analysis of gender and sex transition.

In order to undertake this transformation, to make Marxism as a field of scientific theory adequate to the practice of class struggle, we must transsexualise our Marxism by making it methodologically accountable to trans struggle and the experience of gender/sex transition.” - Pg. 98, Rosa Lee

— There’s no such thing as “sex transition.” To think otherwise is idealist and, thus, not Marxist.

[33] “Now, what I want to argue is that with her 1990 book Gender Trouble, Judith Butler inaugurated, or at least consolidated and proposed, a scientific paradigm shift in the analysis of gender, a shift analogous to the shifts inaugurated by Copernicus and Marx.” - Pg. 99, Rosa Lee

— There’s nothing “scientific” about Butler’s analysis, it’s just word games.

[34] “It may be noted that Butler was not the first person to talk about gender being constructed. Indeed, they cite quite heavily Simone de Beauvoir’s famous claim that ‘one is not for a woman, but rather becomes one’.” - Pg. 101, Rosa Lee

— Beauvoir was talking about sex stereotypes being forced on girls, not saying putting on makeup actually makes someone a woman.

[35] “And so this is why, for a project of a transsexual Marxism, Butler is so central. Because it is her materialist assertion that not only gender but the sexed body itself is social rather than natural, that gender and sex, as constituted social temporality, are not permanent but changeable, mutable, and impermanent.” - Pg. 102, Rosa Lee

— The idea that sex is “social rather than natural” and “not permanent but changeable, mutable, and impermanent” is purely idealist, not materialist or the least bit scientific.

[36] “Far from being the solitary resolution of a pathology through clinical treatment, transition as a process can be considered a glimpse of the forging of new forms of solidarity that might breach a new mode of production. For this end, I think Butler’s theory, which highlights the constructedness and malleability of sex, is a crucial point of departure for trans Marxists. We must bring into view the social and temporal nature not only of gender, but also of the sexed body.” - Pgs. 104 - 105, Rosa Lee

— Chopping off healthy body parts won’t “breach a new mode of production” and sex isn’t constructed or malleable.

[37] “Eventually, I realized that it is a pointless question – the fact is that I am transsexual and I exist, and there is no legitimate reason why I should feel inferior to a cissexual [i.e. a nontranssexual] because of that. Once I accepted my own transsexuality, then it became obvious to me that the question ‘Why do transsexuals exist?’ is not a matter of pure curiosity, but rather an act of non-acceptance, as it invariably occurs in the absence of asking the reciprocal question: ‘Why do cissexuals exist?’ The unceasing search to uncover the cause of transsexuality is designed to keep transsexual gender identities in a perpetually questionable state, thereby ensuring that cissexual gender identities continue to be unquestionable.” - Pgs. 107 - 108, Jules Joanne Gleeson

— More hand waving.

[38] “To provide a simple example: nail polish alone might not do the job in getting a transitioning woman seen as she wishes to be, but nail polish together with long hair, a certain posture, five sessions of laser hair removal, and six months of HRT might very well. Transition consists of amassing a medley of decisive features, which inform the public at large of how you expect to be read, both overtly and on an intuitive level.” - Pg. 110, Jules Joanne Gleeson

— I’ve seen plenty of TRAs argue that there’s no one way a woman or man looks.

[39] “What I really want is not for people to call me a woman because they pity me, sympathize with me, or respect me. It’s better than them calling me a man, but only as a last resort. Really, I want them to call me a woman because it feels natural to do so, because I just seem like a woman to them. This is not something I can just demand, so a lot of the burden is on me. I have to change my appearance, my voice, my mannerisms not with the aim of becoming a woman in some metaphysical sense (a nonsensical idea) but of becoming a woman socially by appearing & interacting ‘like a woman’ with other people.” - Pg. 111, Jules Joanne Gleeson

— First, you’d need a definition of what a woman is for reference, which you have yet to give.

[40] “What this passage reveals is the rather pragmatic character expectations and theorisations we can expect from communities of affinity. Needless to say, the maxim ‘If you’re asking whether or not you’re trans … You’re trans!’ is a gender normative statement of its own kind. However, the relevant capacity for coercion is entirely missing: as Binnie wryly implies, ‘trans women on the internet’ are unlikely to wield the power available to doctors at Johns Hopkins, and anyone susceptible to their advice was likely encountering uncertainty around their gender for sound reasons.” - Pg. 119, Jules Joanne Gleeson

— Hand waving away social contagion again.

[41] “These pieces of writing record the processes of transformation collectively enabled by the communities of affinity which have enabled and celebrated transition. This would seem to point in quite a different direction to the process of identification and elimination of stray misleading features presented in the first view of transition. Whereas much of the attention of trans people, especially early into transition, is drawn towards the ‘moment of encounter’, the subjectivity robust enough to weather such a storm is provided in large part by this ‘underground’ body of community-built resources.” - Pg. 122, Jules Joanne Gleeson

— “Stray misleading features” is a weird way to talk about normal body parts.

[42] “Joseph points towards the role of anonymous gay public sex as a form of reproductive activity, enabling gay identities and defining public gay communal space – cruising grounds and parks, bathhouses, bars, and so forth. However, her otherwise excellent work on the supplementary relation of capital and communities refrains from developing this analysis further. Such activity undoubtedly enables queer social formations: yet the criminalisation of, say, public sex, attempts to stop such behaviour if deemed to have a ‘negative’ effect to an area by a state, thus criminalising queer social formations and public space, and criminalising queer reproductive activity.” - Pg. 141, Nat Raha

— Public sex isn’t a necessary aspect of any gay communal space.

[43] “She argues that the success of the transformistas performances – to construction workers on their lunch breaks – provide both ‘a vision of gender as the self-conscious production of human work’ and through this ‘integrate the politics of sexual transgression to the aspirations of a utopian, anti-capitalist revolutionary project’.” - Pg. 142, Nat Raha

— There’s nothing “anti-capitalist” about a man wearing makeup.

[44] “Brazil has the highest rate of murder of trans people in the world. The average age of the victims is 26. The life expectancy for trans people is just 35.” - Pg. 166, Virginia Guitzel

— Many Brazilian trans people are prostitutes, which is why their death rate there’s so high. Life expectancy for all trans people isn’t 35, that’s a myth based on the murder rates of transgender people in Latin America, who — again — tend to be prostitutes.

[45] “The PSOL doubled its members of parliament in the last elections. However, while revolutionaries certainly can and should run in elections, the PSOL has demonstrated its own strategic limits by putting electoral victory at the centre of their political practice. Vote-winning became an end of its own, rather than a means for building class struggle. They correctly focus on the defence of the most oppressed sectors of society, through attempting to build social movements. But if the PSOL do not use their seats to demand that trade unions build up a fight against austerity and for the working class paying for the crisis, this approach ends up being mere parliamentarianism. Instead of helping to build a combative left, they have built a Democratic Front in parliament, which aims to be a ‘responsible’ opposition that will respect even the arbitrary rulings of the judiciary.” - Pg. 171, Virginia Guitzel

— This is one of the few fire quotes in this book. Troonsimping aside, at least they see a problem with parliamentarianism.

[46] “Beyond the front lines where we trans revolutionaries stand, capitalism also inflicts brutal sexual repression on the whole of the working class. This results in illnesses, unwanted pregnancies, and numerous restrictions on one’s own bodies and desires.” - Pg. 175, Virginia Guitzel

— What sex do these unwanted pregnancies affect?

[47] “Control over others’ bodies, the imposition of binary genders pre-defined by genitalia, heteronormative sexuality, and cisgender conformity are not ‘natural’.” - Pg. 176, Virginia Guitzel

— “Genders” aren’t defined by genitalia, sexes are defined by reproductive anatomy, which is instantly recognized by genitalia in 99.98% of newborns. All anisogamous species naturally reproduce heterosexually.

[48] “By approving the penal code of 1922, the Bolsheviks had recognised the weight of medical and legal opinions that recommended decriminalising same-sex relationships and had included in the objectives of the nascent revolution the battle for the liberation of sexuality, the abolition of discrimination and limitations based on sex and gender, and the emancipation of women, with the aim of eliminating all repressive laws that were, in their view, ‘contradictory with a revolutionary conscience and legality’.” - Pg. 179, Virginia Guitzel

— “The abolition of discrimination and limitations based on sex and gender”? The concept of gender identity wasn’t even thought of until the 50s by documented pedophile John Money. Also, “the emancipation of women”? What do you think the Bolsheviks defined women as?

[49] “Over the following years of struggle, activists such as Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson questioned those who would settle for a relative degree of inclusion of non-heterosexual sexualities and non-cisgendered identities within the capitalist system. One could synthesise Rivera’s critique in the following phrase: ‘if they cannot defeat them, profit from them’. In this, she foresaw the rise of queer liberalism, where corporations and capitalists no longer see gender and sexual minorities as subversive threats but instead as profitable opportunities and lucrative markets. This co-optation has gained strength in recent decades, as evidenced by the role of LGBTQ+ characters in entertainment media and the commercialisation of Pride, where the poor and the angry have been displaced, only to make way for corporate Sponsorships.” - Pg. 181, Virginia Guitzel

— It’s odd that they recognize this issue, yet don’t take this further to seeing that transgender “healthcare” turns trans people into lifelong customers and reinforces gender stereotypes. Maybe the connection isn’t as obvious as I think.

[50] “I resented being assigned male and the social impositions that came with it.” - Pg. 220, Farah Thompson

— You weren’t “assigned male,” you are male. Your maleness was unequivocally observed at birth just by looking between your legs and seeing a completely unambiguous penis. You could argue that there are some social impositions that come with being born male, but those aren’t inherent. We can abolish those impositions, but we can never abolish the male sex, which spans almost all multicellular species.

[51] “In ‘boy mode’ I had friends and relationships, but I was still expected to live up to the same toxic norms even with people who claimed to be against them as marginalised people themselves. Other times I did wrong and apologised to a neurotic degree, wishing that the disease I apparently had by being assigned male at birth would just melt away.” - Pg. 223, Farah Thompson

— “Boy mode”!? Sexism. And, again, you weren’t “assigned male at birth,” you were observed male at birth and that’s not a disease.

[52] “Sometimes I hate myself for not adhering to the performance of what a woman is supposed to be.” - Pg. 224, Farah Thompson

— Many TRAs argue that a woman has no one way they’re supposed to be.

[53] “I was often misgendered while talking on the phone at my last tech job, with occasional correct guesses because of my chosen name and what my voice sounds like over a fuzzy VOIP call.” - Pg. 225, Farah Thompson

— You weren’t “misgendered,” you were correctly sexed.

[54] “Systems that uphold some and depress others to reproduce themselves implicate all of us to varying degrees, because the very mode of reproduction we take for granted is so pervasive that even good deeds may be steeped in blood.” - Pg. 228, Farah Thompson

— This is another fire quote. Many people fail to recognize this. This is the idea behind the phrase “there’s no ethical consumption under capitalism,” which I mostly agree with, although there are still at least relatively more ethical options in many cases, of course.

[55] “9.9: ‘Another point that people lose track of: Public sex situations are not Dionysian and uncontrolled but are rather some of the most highly socialised and conventionalised behaviour human beings can take part in’.” - Pg. 243, JN Hoad

— Degeneracy.

[56] “Judith Butler sketched the ‘heterosexual matrix’ which violently aligns assigned sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation.” - Pg. 246, JN Hoad

— Sex isn’t assigned and gender identity doesn’t exist.

[57] “To conflate the ‘I cannot’ with disability as such would be to commit an ableist and naturalising error. From this view ‘disabled’ bodies are assumed to be simply bodies with fewer ‘natural’ capacities than abled bodies. The social model of disability corrects this error by understanding disabled people to be fully capacitated on their own terms – in the specificity of their own health and wellbeing. The social model holds that we are dis-abled only by the disabling conditions of society. A building without an accessibility ramp is a disabling condition: the wheelchair user is disabled not by her body, but by the material conditions in which she finds herself.” - Pg. 264, Zoe Belinsky

— This is the epitome of coping. I’m disabled by my body, and that’s OK.

[58] “The debilitating conditions faced by both disabled and transgender people brings the ‘I cannot’ to continually invade our phenomenological capacities in otherwise capacitating circumstances. We struggle with reproducing ourselves as labourers in a society that deprives us of the primary means of doing so, and that is continually stripping away its own apparatus for the maintenance of proletarian survival.” - Pg. 265, Zoe Belinsky

— This comparison’s extremely offensive. My disability is in no way comparable to an able-bodied man who feels like he feels like a woman.

[59] “Reproduction of the proletariat includes the social validation from others’ recognition of one’s socially articulated gender. Transgender people receive even less social recognition and validation of our genders than cisgender women, whose genders are in turn validated less often than cisgender men’s are due to the imposition of misogyny and patriarchy.” - Pg. 269, Zoe Belinsky

— Playing pretend with you isn’t a necessity. We don’t “socially validate” people’s “genders,” we observe their sexes.

[60] “Healthcare discrimination and adequate healthcare access, for example, are concerns faced by trans and disabled people in common.” - Pg. 269, Zoe Belinsky

— Getting healthy body parts chopped off isn’t “healthcare.” Again, as a disabled person, this comparison’s extremely offensive.

[61] “A trans person who cannot be this or that kind of woman, man, or non-binary person in the world is incapacitated – just as a disabled person who cannot do this or that job due to lack of accommodations for their particular embodiment.” - Pg. 272, Zoe Belinsky

— Not being able to change your sex isn’t an incapacitation at all. Me not having a fully developed left hand is an incapacitation. Get therapy.

[62] “Commodities are imbued with a mythical relationship to one another that bears no trace of the labour of human beings. In just the same way, gender is imagined as having an explanation that bears no trace of human effort. Our efforts, it seems, can only verify a truth that stands outside of history. Tools are not used to make gender, but to reflect it. The ultrasound and the DNA test discover what we already knew was there.

As trans people, we threaten this apparent effortlessness. If gender is not easily revealed by the apparition on an ultrasound screen, or the spit in a tube, but instead laboriously produced, then the certainty of the whole narrative comes into question.” - Pgs. 283 - 284, Nathaniel Dickinson

— Ultrasounds and DNA tests have nothing to do with “gender,” only sex.

[63] “Scientific and legal discourses and practices have long been used to both justify and perpetuate oppression on the basis of race, gender, disability, and class.” - Pg. 284, Nathaniel Dickinson

— Oppression’s happened on the basis of sex, not “gender.”

[64] “Since the biological determinist approach is the most reactionary form and by definition excludes the possibility of our existence as trans people, that one’s a nonstarter.” - Pg. 285, Nathaniel Dickinson

— First, you need a definition of gender to determine if equating it with sex is “reactionary,” and not a single one of you have given one yet.

[65] “What does it mean to want to be inside of a word, both seeking and resisting the power of other people to validate your realness? This grappling with our connection to gender does not occur in isolation, because transness is not a category that stands separate from the exigencies of race and class.(4)” - Pg. 286, Nathaniel Dickinson

“4. Kai Green argues that ‘the place of the demand’ for inclusion and also reconstitution of the terms of gender is situated at the interstices of transness and blackness; ‘I think Black feminists were asking for a reconstitution of the terms and the terrain (of gender), not simply for an assigned role or designated place on the already existing lands’. Particularly important is his description of the longstanding experiences of gender exclusion endured by cis Black women, who necessarily are always also negotiating an estranged experience of gender. See Green, K. M. & Bey, M. (2017). Where Black Feminist Thought and Trans* Feminism Meet: A Conversation. Souls, 19(4), 438–454.” - Pg. 301

— They constantly single out black women from womanhood and act like everyone else does.

[66] “To claim a new name is to resist the call to submit to language as a vehicle for carrying (someone else’s) objective meaning, and instead insist on meaning as a relationship, in this case made real by imagining and labouring towards a future self.

This way of thinking can also help us to conceptualise the world of difference between engaging with materialism as a science and assuming the reality of objective meaning. Take, for example, the way that a name floats through various bureaucracies, utterly detached from the process that produced it. A birth certificate speaks directly to a licence, a social security number to the ID verification systems used to secure credit reports, and an insurance card to the computer in a doctor’s office. The nurse that chooses to use the incorrect name can absolve themself of any responsibility on the grounds that they are only reading out some a priori meaning.” - Pg. 287, Nathaniel Dickinson

— Words usually refer to something that exists in reality. Words have at least relatively objective meanings.

[67] “For many in the early days of transition, passing becomes an obsession. Whether passing is desirable or contemptible makes no difference – as atheism inherits theism, the measure of ‘passing’ is unavoidable in conversation and in thought. People will compliment, disparage, solicit, or threaten you on the basis of your ability to become nothing remarkable at all. Sometimes you yearn for it – to dissolve into the great mass of people that are arbitrarily exempted from the effort to pass, or to refuse to pass.” - Pg. 288, Nathaniel Dickinson

— “Arbitrarily exempted from the effort to pass”? Do you mean born unambiguously one sex and accept themselves as such, i.e., not have sex dysphoria?

[68] “The test also informs me that I am female, though my insurance card says male, my name is Nathaniel, my pronouns are they/them/he/him, and I have spent some 100 hours on the process of convincing a variety of institutions to acknowledge my nebulous gender. What it is really describing is my karyotype – all those notorious X’s and Y’s – the combination of chromosomes that generally produces reproductive organs in all their variety.

Karyotypes are like books that nobody wants to read. Despite the overwhelming insistence on a biological basis for sex, the very word ‘karyotype’ isn’t widely known and never enters the clinical discussion. The appeal to the materiality of gender is always a second-order appeal; we are meant to have a mystified relationship to material things, to understand spectral things as objective, and objectivity as a static thing removed from the activity of people. The screen re-presents the world, and the presumed materiality of the information provided there has substance only as evidence.” - Pg. 298 - 299, Nathaniel Dickinson

— Karyotype determines sex roughly 99.9% of the time, but not 100%, and sex doesn’t have “presumed materiality,” it’s 100% real.

[69] “They were constructed by the insurance company that called to tell me I should change my gender to female. They could not figure out how to bill me for OBGYN care otherwise.” - Pg. 299, Nathaniel Dickinson

— I wonder why their insurance company can only bill for OBGYN care for females. Does anybody have any ideas?

[70] “What matters isn’t whether you’ve felt this way all your life, or if it was a recent urge, nor whether you think, ‘I am already a man’, as opposed to, ‘I want to be a man’. All that matters is a rejection of your assigned gender at birth, and more broadly your gendered facticity.” - Pg. 304, Xandra Metcalfe

— “Gender” isn’t “assigned at birth,” sex is unequivocally observed at birth in roughly 99.98% of cases.

[71] “Transsexuality in this sense attests to the simple fact that cissexual identification and heterosexual desire are not inborn, ‘natural’ functions of the subject.” - Pg. 307, Xandra Metcalfe

— Again, all anisogamous species naturally reproduce heterosexually. I also have yet to see a definition for trans or cissexual.

[72] “Primordial transsexuality isn’t just a ‘primordial bisexuality’ – it isn’t just before taking up sexual objects, but also prior to a fixed gender identification: the baby is not yet male or female as they simply cannot understand those concepts until it develops language (among other things). Nothing could be further from the (essentialist) notion of ‘gendered brains’ existing in the wrong/right body – gender is essentially based on a non-binary origin.” - Pg. 308, Xandra Metcalfe

— Babies are born either male or female.

[73] “Prior to the installation of the phallus as the privileged signifier of sexual difference, no sexual, or gendered identification exists. In this sense, primordial transsexuality might be described as non-binary. Or inevitably before the binary.” - Pg. 309, Xandra Metcalfe

— Sex existed 1 billion years before humanity.

[74] “Mieli lists schools, sport, family pressure, and employment among other types of ‘fascism’ that, in general, enact violence to those who do not conform to cissexist norms.” - Pg. 310, Xandra Metcalfe

— Then Mario Mieli doesn’t know what fascism means.

[75] “Hence why we need a gay communism (which also equally means a trans communism) – our aim is to liberate humanity from the phallocentric mode of reproduction. Post-capitalism will come only after the phallus. Gay communism will liberate humanity from the trappings of gender norms, abolish and dismantle institutions which exist through violently pruning away and suppressing primordial transsexuality.” - Pg. 310, Xandra Metcalfe

— You just said gay communism equally means trans communism, then said that this form of communism will somehow “liberate humanity from the trappings of gender norms,” even though transgenderism reinforces gender norms.

[76] “Slavoj Žižek posits that ‘one could even say that “man” (or “woman”) is not a certain identity but more like a certain mode of avoiding an identity’.” - Pg. 312, Xandra Metcalfe

— Nonsense.

[77] “In many cases trans people attempt to paper over this question altogether: some assert our existence as political (sometimes crudely opposed to the pathological), a declaration to be celebrated and owned up to, rather than a neuro-developmental riddle to be dryly accounted for (and perhaps cured, at whatever cost).” - Pg. 314, Xandra Metcalfe

— If being trans isn’t based on dysphoria, but it’s just a “political” decision, then you’re effectively saying anyone can be trans just by saying so, which renders the entire concept meaningless.

[78] “My answer isn’t an answer, because the unanswerability of the question ‘Why am I trans?’ is not contingent, but essential to transness. We reach the limits of speech, going beyond the outer reaches of intelligibility.” - Pg. 315, Xandra Metcalfe

— You’re hand waving because you know you can’t defend any answer you give.

[79] “It’s not what a social force claims about itself but where it’s heading that counts for our prospects.” - Pg. 322, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— Fire quote.

[80] “Therefore, while a new crop of intellectuals may be exciting, it is not enough. Neither does the position of some of these intellectuals outside of the universities solve the problem. It is the social relationship, the division between mental and manual labour itself, that has to change.” - Pg. 323, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— Another fire quote.

[81] “The conspiracy theorists at least have the honesty to point out that trans women differ in a number of ways from the dominant defining features which are supposed to be common to all women, but they’re aggressively uninterested in acknowledging that cis women also continually lack many of those features, or that the selection and shaping of the features that define a woman/female are determined by social relations of domination.

Because conspiracists deny that social domination determines the features that define sex, they can’t explain how it is that those features are so heavily racialised, why transition is mashed together with questions of ability/disablement, or why transitions vary so much across time and space.” - Pgs. 329 - 330, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— Social domination doesn’t determine what defines sex because sex existed 1 billion years before humanity and, thus, before society in any form.

[82] “Gender is not simply a varied fabric to be draped over the stricter infrastructure of sex: sex is instead put together post hoc, to match the needs of gender. Female bodies appear female for the sake of sustaining an order that demands them to be so.” - Pg. 333, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— Females existed before humanity and, thus, before any social order.

[83] “A cisgender, heterosexual communism is absurd, impossible.” - Pg. 335, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— All anisogamous species reproduce heterosexually. Strictly heterosexual communism is, of course, absurd, but we wouldn’t be able to naturally reproduce under communism without heterosexuality.

[84] “Particularly inhospitable conditions of self-development bring out particularly vigorous self-creation. Cis or trans, we create ourselves and our conditions, while our conditions create us; only then is the individual abstracted inverted pseudo-person registered. This fact neatly does away with the idea that trans women are specially guilty of living out regressive stereotypes of womanhood – doubly so in that our abstract human personhood is registered in an especially shaky and inconstant fashion. Many of us cannot even live as ourselves full-time. Those forced not to transition at all may have to scratch by in barely survivable conditions.” - Pgs. 349 - 350, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— TiMs are “specially guilty of living out regressive stereotypes of womanhood,” because whenever you guys give an actual definition of the word ‘woman,’ it ends up being based on sexist stereotypes.

[85] “The cosmos is simply the total interrelation – or totality – of what exists. Through truly opening ourselves to integrating thoroughly with the totality, we could realise our concrete reality as the thinking-feeling-doing matter of the cosmos. This would demand that we overcome the division of labour between head and hand; that we supersede the social relations of disembodied social abstractions – such as Woman – that facilitate our subjugation. In other words, that we attain communism.” - Pg. 352, Anja Heisler Weiser Flower

— Womanhood isn’t an “abstraction,” it’s a state of being an adult human female.

[86] “Gill Peterson finds in the archive traces of anxiety on the part of clinicians and researchers about the impossibility of sequestering adrenal systems from secondary sex characteristics – either in CAH itself, or in therapeutic approaches to it. As there is no way to address metabolic regulation without also having effects on sex characteristics, researchers and doctors found themselves forced to conclude that biological sex is far less stable and fixed than they might have liked to presume. Sex, in other words, is not an autonomous property of the body; rather, it – and the body – exist in a tangled metabolic flux.” - Pgs. 392 - 393, Jordy Rosenberg

— Sex characteristics aren’t sex. There are two reproductive pathways for humans to go after sexual differentiation and which way you go is what determines your sex. Sex characteristics develop after sex has been determined, they don’t determine it. Sex is immutable.

Book available at https://bookshop.org/books/transgender-marxism-9780745341668/9780745341668.