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Saturday, December 26, 2009

"Do Not Call Me Cisgender" by Uppity Biscuit

I am uploading this from a post I saw originally on the Michfest list from a member who uploaded it from "Uppity Biscuit". I feel this is such a powerful post that we NAME OURSELVES as bio-Females and as women/womyn/wimmin and Dykes! The website is:

January 19, 2007
Do Not Call Me Cisgender. You Do Not Have My Permission To Name Me.
Posted by uppitybiscuit under Dykes, Feminism, Gay, Gender, Politics, Transgender
[28] Comments
Do Not Call Me Cisgender. You Do Not Have My Permission To Name Me.

Start/General definitions:

Cisgender is a neologism meaning “not transgender,” that is, a gender identity or performance in a gender role that society considers to match or be appropriate for one’s sex. The prefix cis- means “on this side of” or “not across” (cf. cisatlantic, cisalpine).

The term has been given credit as being created by Carl Buijs, a transsexual man from the Netherlands, in 1995. Additional roots show the name being used on a transgender website prior to 1995.

The term transgender was coined in the 1970s by Virginia Prince, a cross-dresser, transvestite, femmiphile, transgenderist in the USA.

End/General definitions

Do not call me cisgender. You have no right or authority to name me without my consent.

Cisgender is a word used by persons who have decided to name me without my permission.

Cisgender is not a name or identity that females, women as a class, have chosen for ourselves.

It does not come from us, as its origins are from a trans perspective, a person said to be a man, created by trans persons and used to name females/women as a class. Women have not agreed to be named by others, as has been done to us through history, being named, identified and defined by others.

You do not get to name me without my permission.

Do not call me cisgender. That is offensive to me. I am offended that you consider that you have power over me, and can name me.

Cisgender is an epithet, abusive, contemptuous and expresses hostility towards me.

I name myself. The names and words I use include female, woman, her, she, wimmin, womon, womyn. You have permission to use those words when addressing or referring to me.

You do not have the permission to call me names you have created for me, against my will and demand that I own them as mine.

Do not call me cisgender. That is your word, not mine.

Do not call me cisgender. I see that word as derogatory, more so when used in slang as a ‘cissie’.

Consider what you are doing to me when you presume to name me, and why I resist. You are naming me and as though I am powerless to name myself. You consider me less than. It is by your own words that you determine that you have the power to name me, that you have the power to define me … create a name for me, and that I have no right to resist.

Do not call me cisgender. You are demeaning me with your word.

I get to name me. You do not get to name me. You are not allowed to re-classify me according to what language suits your needs.

Males have been naming and defining women for a millennium and more. When you demand the right and proceed to take authority to name and define me, without my permission, you embody and keep company with male’s and man’s traditions. You violate me.

Historically, regarding all other human/civil rights movements, the idea was, oppressed people named THEMSELVES. They didn’t re-name their oppressors. To do so would have either been laughable or dangerous, mostly dangerous. Imagine black people telling white people that from now on, white people are going to be called ‘(whatever)’.

The fact that you presume to re-name me shows that I am indeed not your oppressor. You presume to re-name women because in fact women are NOT your oppressor, and even you know as much.

I am not your oppressor, although blaming women for the actions of the patriarchy is a common occurrence.

Do not call me cisgender. I am not less than or owned by you as property for you to name as you see fit.

Through your privileged position over me, you presume to re-name me.

Do not call me cisgender. That is your word and you have no right to name me. I refuse your word. You are not permitted to re-name me to suit your needs.

You do not have authority or permission to name me cisgender, a ‘non-’, or a ‘not-’.

I am a full human, a female, a woman; I am refusing to be renamed.

I do not embrace cisgender, your name for me. I am what I name myself.

I name me female, woman and myself.

1 comment: