Trans Pride 2012: “My Sex Is Not My Identity”
This year, the theme of Trans Pride in Montréal will be “My Sex Is Not My Identity”. A series of events are planned for Saturday May 5, including a conference and a burlesque gala party. At a time when the realities of transsexual and transgendered people throughout the world are often in the headlines and recognition of gender identity fuels numerous political debates, Trans Pride is a day to reflect on these issues, but also to celebrate the resilience, uniqueness and diversity of the trans community.
- Third gender category “under review”: Passport Canada
- Trans Egeria: Mystique & demystification
- Trans Day of Remembrance marked by speeches and solidarity
Danielle Chénier, archivist at the ATQ (Aide aux transsexuels et transsexuelles du Québec), explains the choice of theme this year: “Everywhere in the world, we are talking about the status of transsexual people and several countries have made some important advances in the last few years. We felt that the choice of the theme ‘My Sex Is Not My Identity’ reflects the times we live in.” According to Chénier, the situation of trans people in Québec is evolving in the right direction, but there is still a huge ways to go in terms of demystification in order to fight prejudice and unwarranted hate.
Conferences and discussions
This year’s Trans Pride Day will play host to some very interesting and enlightening discussions. Activities begin at 9 am at the Comité Social Centre-Sud (1710 Beaudry) with a day of conferences and discussions, all for the modest price of 2$. Mathieu-Joël Gervais and Monica Bastien will discuss the importance of trans self-empowerment and self-identification.
UQÀM graduate student and researcher Mickael Chacha Enriquez will be discussing activism surrounding trans issues and rights and in Québec. He will be followed by Françoise Susset, clinical psychologist specialized in trans issues and co-founder of the Institut pour la santé des minorités sexuelles, who will examine the challenges trans people are facing while seeking access to a full recognition of their gender identity.
After the lunch break, Calvin Neufeld will share the very personal story of his transition from female to male, followed by Concordia graduate student and researcher Billy Hébert who will present research findings on trans people and ageing in Québec. Last but not least, Université de Montréal doctoral law-student Jean-Sébastien Sauvé will discuss gender identity and the law, particularly in the context of Québec’s Civil Code.
Burlesque Gala and “Trans Egeria” Photo Exihibition
In the evening, the conference-goers will be ready to celebrate with a burlesque cabaret hosted by Mathieu-Joel and Monica. The gala show will feature the Dukes of Drag and the Les Sublimes Rondeurs. As per tradition, honorary plaques will be handed out to highlight the contributions of two personalities in the trans community. The gala will be held at Café Cléopâtre (1230 St-Laurent). Tickets are $10.
From May 9 to 12, the photo exhibit “Trans Egeria” will be showing at the Nowhere Gallery (1269 Amherst), before making its way to Québec City. It is the first international photography exhibition of transsexual men and women presented in Québec. The exhibit, which was created in France by Reflex Gallery, features a series of portraits that pay homage to 20 or so trans personalities from Québec and elsewhere, underlining their contribution to society. Model Léa T and erotic performer Buck Angel are among those featured.
Though a day of discussion around trans issues is essential, Trans Pride is above all an occasion for trans people to overcome isolation by celebrating their identity with their peers and the rest of the community.
Saturday, May 5, 9am
Comité Social Centre-Sud (1710 Beaudry)
Trans Egeria: May 9-12
Photo: Portrait of Buck Angel by Isauro Martinez Cairo