Posted on Vice

The Politics of ‘Passing’

Published: 25/03/2015

“All I ever wanted was anonymity and to be almost completely ignored. All I ever wanted was to look no different to any other woman around and be able to blend into the crowd,” says trans activist Phillippa Scrafton, when I ask her about her transition.

“I think when you stand out as different, in some circles it can be difficult. For me – in the beginning – because I didn’t ‘look like a woman’, I was very wary of my safety and where I was.”

Trans people still find their appearance the subject of intense scrutiny, both in the public and the media. For those transitioning under the attentive gaze of the press, like it’s been widely alleged that Bruce Jenner is doing, for example, even the most minor adjustments – a manicure, change of footwear or new hairstyle – command column inches.


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