|dc.description.abstract||Transmasculinity is a contemporary site for meaning-making about masculinity. I argue, more specifically, that queer-identified transmasculine people can practice queer masculinity in a way that resists hegemonic expectations of sexism, racism and homophobia. Queer (trans)masculinity, as I experience it, may be articulated through sexism/racism/homophobia or may create other forms of masculinity, which I call “incoherent” masculinities. The term “incoherent” signifies that these masculinities are articulated in resistance and critique of coherent hegemonic masculinity. The term (trans)masculinity refers to the blurry lines between masculine people who are trans and masculine people who are not: it is an effort to address a wider audience of masculine people, including men, butches, transguys, genderqueers, masculine femmes, and so on, while still recognising that I speak from a trans perspective.
In Chapter One I review the field of trans theory, in Chapter Two I describe my queer methodology, and in Chapter Three I ask “How can I speak, as a genderqueer transmasculine person?” After establishing a tentative speaking position, in Chapters Four – Six I outline different aspects of this politics of incoherence in relation to the practice of ethical masculinity.
The underlying premise of my thesis is that (trans)masculinity is a practice, not a static identity. I suggest that transmasculine people have a uniquely gendered perspective, for example, I was assigned female at birth, socialized as a girl, enjoyed my girlhood, moved into a genderqueer dyke identity, shifted to transmasculine queer, morphed into butch transfag and, most recently, transformed into genderqueer transmasculine femme. However, I do not position transmasculine people as the new exemplars of ethical masculinity. Alongside four other voices from transguys I interviewed in New Zealand, I speak from my embodied experience as a transmasculine person. I propose that simply identifying as queer and transmasculine is not sufficient for a politics of incoherence. Identity is an ongoing practice, thus, we must embody and advocate anti-racism, combat misogyny/sexism and homophobia, and articulate our masculinities with awareness of our particular position within wider networks of power. For example, being white/Pakeha, I need to practice incoherent masculinity by refusing to affirm my masculinity through racism, by actively disrupting the dominance of white/Pakeha norms of masculinity in the postcolonial context of New Zealand.
A politics of incoherence relies on coalitions between political movements such as queer activism, third wave feminism, anti-racism, indigenous rights, disability activism, and workers rights. In my exploration of incoherent (trans)masculinities, I draw on queer, feminist and trans theories, concluding that academic and political cross-pollination between these movements will invigorate a resistant, critical and creative politics of incoherence.||