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Breaking Binaries

in INDIA, 14/04/2013

A study conducted by LABIA – A Queer Feminist LBT Collective In 2009-2010, LABIA initiated a research study based on 50 life history narratives of queer PAGFB (persons assigned gender female at birth), and aided by discussions with queer LBT and trans* groups. 11 of us (many of us members of LABIA) did the interviews, transcripts and initial analysis, and 4 of us have been doing the further analysis and writing.

Key findings have been presented at different conferences and some of the data has been published. Now we bring you the full report.

Through this study, we explore the circumstances and situations of queer PAGFB who are made to, or expected to, fit into society's norms around gender and sexuality. We look at their experiences with natal families and in school; we chart their journey through intimate relationships and jobs; we attempt to understand what happens to them in public spaces, and how they are treated by various state agencies; we discover where they seek and find support, community, and a refuge from the violence and discrimination that mark far too many lives.

Most significantly, this research has given us new insights into gender itself, which we feel are crucial additions to the current discourse in both queer and feminist spaces. Finally, the study flags areas of particular concern, and highlights some necessary interventions.

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