Teaching trans studies through fan fiction in college English classrooms
Keywords:College education, Gender nonbinary, Inclusive classrooms, Interdisciplinary trans studies, Social engagements
Trans studies has usually been taught within gender studies and women's studies programs. Yet, as trans studies has become highly interdisciplinary, trans awareness is still an issue in many fields; thus, incorporating trans discussions in courses in multiple disciplines is imperative. This study demonstrates how the firsthand teaching experience of a student-centered, literary-theory-related undergraduate course unit given by the English department incorporated trans studies through fan fiction. Particularly, we utilized the theoretical concept of nonbinary genders and its resistance to the heteronormative and heteropatriarchal system via a study of Loki's gender fluidity in the Loki miniseries, some exemplary transgender fan fiction, and the Omegaverse. Fandoms and fan fiction can be valuable course materials to create a comfortable space for students from different backgrounds to actively engage, discuss, and think critically about trans topics and trans theories. In this sense, this course unit explores the possibility of teaching trans studies beyond gender studies classrooms as well as courses focusing primarily on trans studies, encouraging more students to understand trans concepts and become trans allies.
Copyright (c) 2023 Peizhen Wu
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
TWC Nos. 25 onward are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC by 4.0). For an explanation of the journal's reasoning, see the TWC editorial Copyright and Open Access. TWC Nos. 1 through 24 are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC 3.0) license, with TWC, not the author, retaining copyright.
Presses whose policies require written permission for reproduction should contact the TWC Editor; such permission is routinely given for no fee.