chapter  9
Beyond Borders: Lived Experiences of Atypically Gendered Transsexual People
Pages 19

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Building upon the work of Judith Butler (1990) and Michel Foucault (1984) and emerging in the early 1990s from the fi elds of lesbian, gay and feminist studies, queer theory constitutes a collection of foci on the relations between sex, gender and desire in relation to stereotypical heterosexual norms. Central to queer theory is a concern with the ways in which atypical confi gurations of gender, sex and desire challenge the concept of the ‘natural’ (Butler 1990, 1991, 1993; Spargo 1999; Sullivan 2003). Since queer theory’s inception, the use of the term ‘queer’ has spread beyond academia into lesbian, gay and transgender communities where it is now commonly used as an umbrella term for sexual and gender identities beyond the norm (Jagose 1996; Wilchins 2004; Halberstam 2005).