The politics of the toilet: A feminist response to the campaign to ‘degender’ a women’s space

Originally published in the Women’s Studies International Forum Journal:

“This article is a feminist response to the campaigning activism and queer and transgender theory which promotes the ‘degendering’ of public toilets. This campaign originates in the demands of men who transgender to access women’s toilets. Activists argue that sex
segregation of toilets is the result of nineteenth century moralism and is a discriminatory
practice. They say that degendered toilets would be safer for women because the good
men would protect women from aggressors, and they show a remarkable degree of
insensitivity to women’s needs and interests. The campaign is increasingly effective, with
schools in the US and local councils in the UK moving to degender toilets in response. This
article will argue that the safety of women as a group requires that toilet provision should
remain sex segregated or take the form of individual cubicles that offer privacy and safety
to all users.”

Click here to read the full article!

Insult, offence and the draft Human Rights and Anti- Discrimination Bill

Originally published in The Australian by Natasha Bita, January 26th 2013.

“Under the right to gender identity, male-bodied persons, in many cases with penises intact, are likely to be permitted to enter women’s toilets,” she says in a submission to the Senate inquiry. “There are quite a surprising number of cases in which men wearing women’s clothing have been arrested for … secret photographing of women using the toilets and showers, peeping at women from adjacent stalls … (and) luring children into women’s toilets in order to assault them.” Continue reading

Gender Hurts, New Book by Sheila Jeffreys

Don’t forget to pre-order Gender Hurts, coming out this April!

It is only recently that transgenderism has been accepted as a disorder for which treatment is available. In the 1990s, a political movement of transgender activism coalesced to campaign for transgender rights. Considerable social, political and legal changes are occurring in response and there is increasing acceptance by governments and many other organisations and actors of the legitimacy of these rights.

This provocative and controversial book explores the consequences of these changes and offers a feminist perspective on the ideology and practice of transgenderism, which the author sees as harmful. It explores the effects of transgenderism on the lesbian and gay community, the partners of transgenders, children who are identified as transgender and transgenders themselves and argues these are negative. In doing so the book contends that the phenomenon is based upon sex stereotyping, referred to as ‘gender’ – a conservative ideology that forms the foundation for women’s subordination. Gender Hurts argues for the abolition of ‘gender’, which would remove the rationale for transgenderism.