Rift in Women’s Studies over Transgender Issues – January 2017

WMST-L is like many online discussion groups for scholars. It features many posts in which scholars try to help one another. What would be a good book to add to a syllabus on a given course? What do people know about the content of a forthcoming conference? Who might be interested in joining a panel at a scholarly meeting?

And it was the response to a seemingly innocuous call for panelists and papers that has prompted scholars to quit the Listserv and call for a boycott. Those calling for the boycott say the list, a major forum for communication in women’s studies, gives voice to anti-transgender bigotry…

One comment in particular angered trans scholars.

“We don’t need supposedly progressive folks downplaying the importance of women’s reproductive functions at this time. Let us stop this game now. Only women get pregnant and it serves women not at all to pretend this is not true!”

The comment was from Sheila Jeffreys, a professor at the University of Melbourne, in Australia, whose work criticizing the transgender movement has been controversial in other settings as well.

Read full article by Scott Jaschik in Inside Higher Ed here.