On the way home from Chams last week, BBC Radio 4 had a large night edition of Woman’s Hour. It’s not a programme I usually listen to, as I’m at work, but if it’s on; I’ll listen. Not from some faux woman within malarkey (well, false for me – it may be very true for others).
Moreover, you get to hear different topics of conversation.
The Late Night Edition covered fanfic, cosplay and sci-fi & fantasy, albeit with a view of what it means to women today. If any of the above are your bag, there’s a podcast you can download here.
So what’s this got to do with being trans? Well, it wasn’t discussed directly, although there was talk about identity and how different on-line communities allow people to experiment. Change who they are, how they wish to be perceived, etc. In the final segment of the show, one of the experts was talking about the drop of organised religion’s hold over the UK, since the 80s. She went on to say that people have filled (or maybe, replaced) that community with their own.
What struck me, was the talk about religions and fan communities allowing people to be different from their usual life. A sense of belonging and a place where you can be who you want, without the binaries if everyday life. Hmmm. What does that remind me of? 🙂
|Part timers, full timers, partners, F2M, M2F and the undecided|
So is Chams – or indeed any trans support group – effectively a church? It’s not like we have worship, although do we have rituals. The getting ready, photos, parties and the return to drab, at the end of the evening.
All tortured similarities aside, the sense of community is fantastic. A mix of short, medium and long term visitors. You don’t really know who will stay and who will drift away, or move on. All part of the variety of life.