flexibeast.space - gemlog - 2020-10-05

Re: Does being queer and/or TGD contraindicate STEM?

idiomdrottning's latest post:

Re: Does being queer and/or TGD contraindicate STEM?

makes a number of excellent points. But i was confused when reading it, as it didn't really seem to be addressing the issue i'm trying to raise.

Thinking about it, it occurs to me that maybe people are reading my use of the word ‘representation(s)’ as being about numeric representation, i.e. to what extent queer/TGD people are numerically present in STEM spaces. In fact, i'm talking about portrayals, i.e. how the media and the community, whether mainstream or queer/TGD, portray queer/TGD people. i'm talking about the queer/TGD ‘reference pool’, analogous to the ‘geek reference pool’:

TV Tropes: ‘GeekReferencePool’

That is, i'm talking about the interests that queer/TGD people are assumed to have - and in my experience, are often expected to have. (For example, people assume that i'll be a Lady Gaga fan, and are confused, and sometimes appalled, by the fact that my feelings about her are more "meh, whatever".) Hence me writing in my previous post:

My [original] post .... was about limited/narrow representations, including in the the queer/TGD communities, of what queer/TGD people are like ... [M]y experiences of representations of queer/TGD people overwhelmingly represent us as primarily arty / flamboyant / ‘fabulous’, representations which don't at represent me, a woman who is both queer and TGD, nor the many other queer/TGD people i know who aren't these things.

So i wasn't saying (for example): “Trans women are numerically underrepresented in STEM!” (In fact, if anything, my experience has led to me feeling we might be numerically _over_represented in tech and maths relative to our numbers in the general population.) But if i had made such a claim, i would agree with idiomdrottning writing:

• Compared to men, you are right, I agree, this must change and I'm glad it's changing to the extent it is.

• Compared to non-TGD women, I don't think you're right. I just don't.

However, if that comment is indeed about portrayals, then i'm not sure i can make sense of what i'm not right about. :-) Explications welcome!

🏷 maths,politics,queer,reply,science,sociology,tgd


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