Tom / Trans / Thai: New Year Update 2013
I am thrilled to announce that TOM / TRANS / THAI will be screened in the 2013 Center for Asian American Media Film Festival (CAAMFest) in San Francisco on March 17 and 20 as part of the Queer Convergence shorts program curated by Munira Lokhandwala and Vu T. Thu Ha.
The film has also been submitted to Frameline 37: San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, which takes place June 20-23, 2013; Under New Management, a video rental store project in Toronto, Ontario, Canada; and may be curated in a forthcoming shorts program in Berlin, Germany.
I have also revised my companion critical essay, “Tom/Gay, Trans/Queer: Mixed Translations Across Thai and Thai American Trans-masculinities,” which has been submitted for possible publication in the Transgender Studies Quarterly 1.2: Decolonizing the Transgender Imaginary.
JIN HARITAWORN: THE BIOPOLITICS OF MIXING
I also wanted to announce the publication of a new book by the brilliant Jin Haritaworn, The Biopolitics of Mixing: Thai Multiracialities and Haunted Ascendancies (Ashgate Press, 2012). See video footage of Jin’s presentation on the book at the Multicultural Centre in Sweden, which took place last November 2012 (English with Swedish subtitles). Jin interviewed people of mixed Thai heritage in Germany and Britain as part of this book project. In reference to one of these interviewees, Jin states:
The other culture, having been excised from Luzia’s genealogy, is nevertheless stuck back on to her phenotype/genotype body. In the process it becomes a quasi-genetic property of a surface, a feature on a face that triggers a melancholic quest for something that you have destroyed. – Jin Haritaworn
If you are interested in acquiring the book for your university library, leave a comment and I can forward your information to Jin.
BO LUENGSURASWAT: AN UNRULY ARCHIVE
Please check out Bo Luengsuraswat’s essay “An Unruly Archive of Healing: Struggling Against the Traumas of Community Violence, Immigration Enforcement, and Queer/Trans of Color Cultural Amnesia.” Bo writes, “Central to this archive is my lived experience and positionality as a trans immigrant of color at the precarious intersection of the U.S. immigration system, the non-profit industrial complex, and queer/trans of color community activism.” This essay looks at his personal experiences with trans/queer spaces and organizations in and outside of Los Angeles and attempts healing in the hope for (and lack of) community accountability.
BANGKOK POST: A TRICKY TRANSITION
On October 8, 2012, the Bangkok Post online featured an English-language article on the lives of two Thai transgender men in Thailand (full article re-posted via Thai Transgender Alliance). I was absolutely shocked, as the article is the first of its kind that I have seen to profile the lives of Thai trans men. Surprisingly, it manages to use all the politically correct language concerning “transgender” experience in an American context, while curiously making no mention of hyper-visible tom identity as possible language for trans-masculinity in Thailand. These examples show that FTM identity and tom identity indeed circulate within different worlds, networks and languages, and brings into question the mechanisms of translation.
SHE: tHEiR LOVE STORY (dir. Sranya Noithai, 2012)
Despite the somewhat corny title, this new film on contemporary tom/dy/les couples is surprisingly well made, in both its writing and cinematography. View the trailer here. Two other movies to come out recently are Yes or No and its sequel, Yes or No 2, both of which are circulating online with English subtitles.