Race-ing Migration, Gendering Movement: Transgender Detainees and Non-Human Others

Wednesday, September 11, 2019
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM (ET)
SMITH Rehm Lib
Event Type
Lecture - Speaker
Karen Todd
CIS/ Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies

Lecture with Prof. Salvador Vidal-Ortiz.

Almost exactly within a year of each other, two immigrant transgender women from Latin America –Johana Medina León and Roxsana Hernández Rodríguez– have died under ICE custody; other trans women have complained of horrendous treatment in detention centers (this has happened in the context of over 20 deaths of children and adults in such facilities). Responses have ranged from transgender activists like Jennicet Gutiérrez (in the Southwest region) confronting government officials outside detention centers and challenging the inhumane policies of this government; to advocates such as Ruby Corado (in the Mid-Atlantic region) who have supported trans asylum seekers with housing, system navigation, and psychosocial and legal support services. This presentation will connect the racializing practices of detaining migrants coming to the U.S. with Othering processes these Latin American transgender women face. Drawing from trans studies and critical race studies, this presentation exposes the dehumanization of those deemed deviant, in general, with migrant detainees in mind – particularly trans women. The tactics of treating as non-human those whose lives are regulated based on the racialization of migration, and gender norms, are the heart of this lecture.

Prof. Salvador Vidal-Ortiz, Distinguished Scholar in Residence for the Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies program at Holy Cross. He is associate professor of sociology at American University, and has taught at the City University of New York, Barnard College, and the University of Colorado – Boulder. As a Fulbright scholar, he taught at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá, Colombia, where he has also taught at the Universidad de Los Andes and the Universidad Nacional de Colombia – Sede Caribe; most recently, Dr. Vidal-Ortiz taught at the Universidad Federal de Amapá in Brazil. Among his edited and authored books in English are The Sexuality of Migration: Border Crossings and Mexican Immigrant Men (NYU Press), Queer Brown Voices: Personal Narratives of Latina/o LGBT Activism (University of Texas Press) and Race and Sexuality (Polity Press). In Spanish, he co-edited Travar el Saber, loosely translated to "Trans-ing Knowledge," about first person narratives of trans men and women in the Argentinian educational system. His scholarship cuts across racialization, sexuality, gender, migration and religion, and is interdisciplinary. 

Categories: Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies

Get Directions
Event Date
Event Time