May 29, 2013

Duke University Press launches the first transgender studies journal


Duke University Press announced that it will publish the first non-medical academic journal dedicated to transgender studies, Carleigh Stein reports for the university’s student newspaper, the Chronicle. The Transgender Studies Quarterly is aiming to launch in 2014; it will be edited by Susan Stryker, associate professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Arizona, and Paisley Currah, professor of political science at CUNY-Brooklyn.

TSQ is counting on a Kickstarter campaign for its funding, and it seems to be in pretty good shape. As of Tuesday evening, Stryker and Currah had received $18,768 of the $20,000 they need, with sixteen days left to hit that target. In a video on the Kickstarter page, Stryker explains some of her motivation for starting the journal, primarily that there hasn’t been a dedicated resource for trans individuals:

There has not been one place to go to find information on trans issues, but it always shows up in special issues of journals for some other field–public health, psychology, sociology journals–in very episodic ways… Part of what’s exciting for me about the journal is that I feel like there’s actually a really deep political project in it, that so often trans people are talked about, in ways that are useful for the state, or that are useful for something other than how we live our own bodies and our own lives. Other people produce knowledge about us. What this journal is really trying to do, I think, is to not make it just a vehicle for a kind of transgender identity politics, but to say that trans people who have certain kinds of academic training, and work in the academy, and produce knowledge…that we might have a different take on what transgender means and how it works.

Stryker also told the Chronicle that she and Currah are excited to be working with Duke UP, and that it was their first choice of publishers because of some of the other journals that it publishes, including GLQ, which focuses on queer theory, and differences, a journal of feminist cultural studies. The university’s LGBTQ community is pleased with the announcement; Jacob Tobia, former president of Duke’s LGBTQ student group Blue Devils United said, “The publication of the Transgender Studies Quarterly will do an incredible amount to increase the visibility of transgender and gender non-conforming people within the Academy. Personally, I couldn’t be more proud that Duke is playing such an integral role in its publication.”

TSQ’s goal is to launch in April 2014 with a debut double-issue titled “Postposttransexual: Terms for a 21st Century Transgender Studies,” a series of essays about the key concepts in transgender studies.


Nick Davies was a publicist at Melville House.