What does it mean for someone to be ‘trans’? What are the implications of this for healthcare provision?
Drawing on the findings of an extensive research project, this book addresses urgent challenges and debates in trans health. It interweaves patient voices with social theory and autobiography, offering an innovative look at how shifting language, patient mistrust, waiting lists and professional power shape clinical encounters, and exploring what a better future might look like for trans patients.
“This book offers sophisticated yet clear explanations of the terrain of trans health in the UK, with superb analytic purchase – made all the more impressive by its accessibility and candour.” Sociology of Health & Illness
“Offers a refreshing perspective on trans health from the voices and experiences of binary and nonbinary people [and] has wide appeal to social scientists, trans studies scholars, and patients and medical providers working in trans health care.” American Journal of Sociology
“The turn to a consideration of trans health… is long overdue... ‘Understanding Trans Health’ corrects this gap, by offering us insights into the current provision of gender identity services that are empirically grounded and framed by theoretical contributions of queer theory and post-structuralism.” Feminism & Psychology
“Pearce’s outstanding combination of social theory, patient discourse and autobiography offer a unique insight into what it means to be a trans patient in the UK… it should be considered an informative text for the general public, an insightful read for trans individuals, health practitioners, policy makers and activists as well as a staple book for anyone working in the field of trans studies.” Feminist Legal Studies
"This valuable book provides an innovative approach to trans health weaving personal narrative, sociological theories and activist perspectives. It makes a vital contribution to promoting health equality for trans people." Julie Fish, Centre for LGBTQ research, De Montfort University, Leicester.
"One of the most impressive trans books I've read. Pearce's research is of the utmost importance - her writing accessible, her conclusions transformational." CN Lester, author of "Trans Like Me".
“An important, well-researched and original book ... a rich blend of theory and research ... A crucial new addition to the growing body of work on transgender
experience.” Jack Halberstam, Columbia University, author of Trans*: A Quick and Quirky Guide to Gender Variability
"This highly topical book addresses the key issues of trans people's health, identity, and social change. It offers an innovative critical perspective regarding the medical
establishment and trans activism." Surya Monro, University of Huddersfield
Ruth Pearce is a Research Fellow in the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds. Her research looks at patterns of inequality, marginalisation, power, and political struggle in institutional contexts, with a focus on trans, queer, and women’s issues.
Part One: The context of care;
Introduction: coming to terms with trans health;
Condition or movement? A genealogy of trans discourse;
Trans health in practice: conditions of care;
Part Two: Navigating health services;
Trans temporalities: imagining a future in the time of anticipation;
Part Three: Changing trans health;
The politics of trans health: negotiating credible knowledge;
Towards affirmative care.