Junk Food

Monday, October 24, 2016

Chromosomal Sex

I'm reading about conception, pregnancy, and childbirth for my human behavior class, which is, you know, a minefield for cissexist language and blind acceptance of the genetic gender binary. The thing is, it's gotten me thinking. Since "male" and "female" are two separate results of chromosome combinations with Y as the dominant sex chromosome, and given the many variations we now know to be true (XXXY, XXY, XY androgen insensitive person, etc), what we have are humans who respond to cellular reactions to proteins and enzymes that shape and form their bodies, beginning in their development beginning in utero.

So the place I go as a trans woman in this socially constructed genetic maleness or femaleness, is that being trans is somehow often seen as going against our genetics. We are seen as defying not only the environmental and social influences over our sex and gender, but the very genes within us that are informing hormone operation, which guides the production of proteins and enzymes to certain cells, thus influencing genetic expression.

It is with this notion of harnessing our hormones to influence our very own genetic expression that I find the most appealing about this cellular experience of being trans. We at our very core do not defy our genetic nature, but embrace our relationship to it. By defining the way our genes express themselves, we are making art out of our own developing bodies and shaping ourselves with the bodies we were taught to hate.

I can't think of anything more empowering a response to the doctrine of trans as equivalent to being a genetic "mistake". On the contrary, we are in fact very skilled genetic artists.


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