Manifestations of Transphobia in Computer-Mediated Communication. A Case Study of Language Discrimination in English and Polish Internet-Mediated Discourse

Magdalena Derecka

Abstrakt

This article aims to investigate the linguistic means of transphobic discrimination observed on the Internet. The languages analysed are English and Polish, since they both offer their speakers direct and indirect ways that discrimination manifests itself, yet Polish seems to enable a more noticeable means because of the presence of grammatical gender in the language. The paper discusses twelve samples of Computer-Mediated Communication, using the methodological tools offered by Critical Discourse Analysis and Queer Theory. Based on the analysis of the samples, the article shows that even though transphobia lies mainly in lexical choices of the speaker, it is not always direct, i.e. visible in insults and attacks on a trans person, but is oftentimes indirect, i.e. visible in the incorrect use of personal pronouns in both English and Polish, or in the incorrect use of grammatical gender in Polish. Moreover, while transphobia visible in language is not always intended by the speaker, it  can still be considered to be discriminatory. 

 

Abstrakt

Artykuł ma na celu zbadanie środków językowych używanych w języku transfobicznym zaobserwowanym w internecie. Analizie poddane zostały języki angielski i polski, ponieważ obydwa umożliwiają ich użytkownikom bezpośrednie i pośrednie sposoby dyskryminowania na tle transfobicznym, język polski zdaje się jednak umożliwiać bardziej zauważalny sposób ze względu na obecny w nim rodzaj gramatyczny. W artykule omówiono dwanaście przykładów komunikacji internetowej, korzystając z metodologii krytycznej analizy dyskursu i teorii queer. Na podstawie analizy materiału empirycznego w artykule wykazano, że chociaż transofobia realizowana jest głównie poprzez wybory  leksykalne danego nadawcy, nie zawsze jest ona bezpośrednia (tj. opiera się na obelgach i atakach na osobę transpłciową), lecz często bywa pośrednia (tj. polega na użyciu niewłaściwych zaimków osobowych zarówno w języku angielskim, jak i polskim, czy też na użyciu niewłaściwego rodzaju gramatycznego w języku polskim). Ponadto pomimo że transfobia widoczna w języku nie zawsze jest zamierzona przez osobę mówiącą, wciąż może być uznana za dyskryminującą.

Słowa kluczowe: komunikacja internetowa, język dyskryminacji, rodzaj gramatyczny, media społecznościowe, transfobia, język transfobiczny / computer-mediated communication, discriminatory language, grammatical gender, social media, transphobia, transphobic language
References

 Sources

[S1]   Anna Grodzka była przystojnym facetem (2013). [http://wiadomosci.wp.pl/anna-grodzka-byla-przystojnym-facetem-6031583404336257a?ticaid=1189d4; accessed December 17, 2017]

[S2]   Anohni przedstawia „4 Degrees” (2015). [http://muzyka.onet.pl/alternatywa/anohni-przedstawia-4-degrees/dkcpfq;accessed March 29, 2017].

[S3]   Co  łączy  wrażliwą  Annę  Grodzką  z  byłym  działaczem  PZPR  Krzysztofem Bęgowskim? Wszystko! (2012).
[http://wpolityce.pl/polityka/135619-co-laczy-wrazliwa-anne-grodzka-z-bylym-dzialaczem-pzpr-krzysztofem-begowskim-wszystko; 
accessed December 17, 2017].

[S4]   Pierwsza twarz Anny Grodzkiej. Wielkie fałszerstwo życiorysu działacza PZPR (2012).[http://oszustwo.eu/archives/1742; accessed December 25, 2017].

[S5]   Anohni “Drone Bomb Me” [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUEoic7ro_o; accessed December18, 2017].

[S6]   Laverne Cox Presents: ‘The T Word’ Full Documentary | MTV [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDy0DhfuxfI; accessed April 3, 2017].

[S7]   Laverne Cox Explains Her Relationship With Her Body & Struggles to Pay Rent | Body Stories |SELF [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-ylx6vhiZc; accessed 20 March, 2019].

[1]     ACON. A Language Guide: Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusion. [https://www.acon.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/External_Language-Guide-17396_print_V13.pdf; accessed March 25, 2019].

[2]     “BBC” (2017). Urban Dictionary. [https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=BBC;accessed March 21, 2019].

[3]     Egale Canada Human Rights Trust (nd.). What Constitutes Transphobic and CisnormativeBullying and Harassment.[https://www.ed.gov.nl.ca/edu/k12/safeandcaring/pdf/Transphobic_Cisnormative_
Bullying_Harassment.pdf; accessed March 21, 2019].

[4]     How to React After Accidentally Misgendering Someone (2014).[http://www.pdxqcenter.org/how-to-react-after-accidentally-misgendering-someone/; accessedMarch 21, 2019].

[5]     Pawłowicz o Grodzkiej: Jaka pani? Twarz boksera (2013). [https://www.tvn24.pl/wiadomosci-z-kraju,3/pawlowicz-o-grodzkiej-jaka-pani-twarz-boksera,303037.html; accessed May 20, 2019].

[6]     Planned Parenthood (nd.). Sexual Orientation and Gender.[https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/sexual-orientation-gender; accessed March 23, 2019].

[7]     Polskie   Towarzystwo   Seksuologiczne   (nd.).   Stanowisko   PTS   ws   sytuacji społecznej, zdrowotnej i prawnej osób transpłciowych. [http://pts-seksuologia.pl/sites/strona/83/stanowisko-pts-ws-sytuacji-spolecznej-zdrowotnej-i-prawnej-osob-transplciowych; accessed March 23, 2019].

[8]     Senat.gov.pl. Debata o ustawie o uzgodnieniu płci. Senator PiS zrównuje trans-seksualizm z pedofilią. “Taka jest logika tego działania” (2015). [http://wyborcza.pl/10,82983,18488441,debata-o-ustawie-o-uzgodnieniu-plci-senator-pis-zrownuje.html; accessed May 20, 2019].

[9]     Trans troops return to era of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ as Trump policy takes effect (2019).[https://www.theguardian.com/us -news/2019/apr/12/transgender-ban-military-trump-take-effect-dont-ask-dont-tell; accessed May 20, 2019].

[10]   Wipe Out Transphobia (nd.). Transphobia. [http://www.wipeouttransphobia.com/support/; accessed November 11, 2018].

[11]   World Health Organisation moves to end classifying trans identities as mental illness (2018). [https://tgeu.org/world-health-organisation-moves-to-end-classifying-trans-identities-as-mental-illness/; accessed March 24, 2019].

 

Critical literature

Billard Thomas J. (2018). “Passing” and the politics of deception: Transgender bodes, cisgender aesthetics, and the policing of inconspicuous marginal identities. In The Palgrave Handbook of Deceptive Communication, Tony Docan-Morgan (ed.), 463–477. Palgrave Macmillan: New York.

Crompton  Rosemary, Lyonette  Clare (2005). The new gender essentialism – domestic and family ‘choices’ and their relation to attitudes. The British Journal of Sociology 56(4), 601–620.

Fairclough Norman (1989). Language and Power. Harlow: Longman.

Fairclough  Norman (2012). Critical discourse analysis. International Advances in Engineering and Technology 7, 452–487.

Halberstam, Judith (2001). Telling tales: Brandon Teena, Billy Tipton, and transgender biography. In Maria C. Sanchez, Linda Schlossberg (eds.), Passing: Identity and Interpretation in Sexuality, Race, and Religion, 13–37. New York, NY: New York University Press.

Hall Stuart (1997). The spectacle of the “Other.” In Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices, Stuart Hall (ed.), 223–290. London: SAGE/Open University.

Hord  Levi C.R. (2016). Bucking the linguistic binary: Gender neutral language in English, Swedish, French, and German. Western Papers in Linguistics/Cahiers linguistiques de Western: Vol. 3(1), Article 4.

Huang Ni, Hong  Yili, Burtch  Gordon (2015). Anonymity and language usage: A natural experiment of social network integration. Paper presented at the Thirty Sixth International Conference on Information Systems, Fort Worth.
[URL:https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/f75a/6cb2ac51f40e11a78a464d14e2ad0de468be.pdf; accessed March 22, 2019].

Jørgensen Marianne W., Phillips Louise J. (eds.) (2002). Discourse Analysis as Theory and Method. London: SAGE Publications.

Livia Anna, Hall Kira (1997). “It’s a girl!”: Bringing performativity back to linguistics. In Queerly Phrased. Language, Gender, and Sexuality, Anna Livia, Kira Hall (eds.), 3–18. New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Motschenbacher Heiko, Stegu Martin (2013). Introduction: Queer Linguistics approaches to discourse. Discourse & Society 24, 519–535.

Thurlow Crispin, Lengel Laura, Tomic Alice (2004). Computer Mediated Communication. Social Interaction and the Internet. London, Thousand Oaks, New Delhi: SAGE.

Wernick Laura J., Kulick Alex, Inglehart  Marita H. (2014). Influences of peers, teachers and climate on students’ willingness to intervene when witnessing anti-transgender harassment. Journal of Adolescence 37(6), 927–935.

 

Internet sources

Allen Samantha (2017). The political pettiness of misgendering transgender people. The Daily Beast.

[https://www.thedailybeast.com/this-is-why-misgendering-hurts-transgender-people-so-much; accessed March 24, 2019].

Anderson Ryan T. (2018). Transgender ideology is riddled with contradictions. Here are the big ones. The Heritage Foundation. [https://www.heritage.org/gender/commentary/transgender-ideology-riddled-con- tradictions-here-are-the-big-ones; accessed May 21, 2019].

Bailey Emma (2012). Behaviour that’s transphobic and why. Wipe Out Transphobia. [http://www.wipeouttransphobia.com/2012/07/20/transgender-suicide-rate/; accessed May 29, 2019].

Bartram Fay (nd.). Ten steps to tackling homophobic, biphobic and transphobic language in your school.

[http://www.stonewall.org.uk/sites/default/files/hbt_language.pdf; accessed February 8, 2018].

Beaumont-Thomas Ben (2016). Anohni, the artist once known as Antony Hegarty, on life beyond the Johnsons. The Guardian. [https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/apr/09/trans-singer-anohni-new-album-hopelessness; accessed March 21, 2019].

Butler Tijen (2018, December 4). Deadname: What is deadn aming and who is guilty of it? PinkNews.[https://www.pinknews.co.uk/2018/12/04/deadname-deadnaming/; accessed March 25, 2019].

Chiu Allyson (2018, August 14). Laverne Cox lambastes ‘dead naming.’ What is it and why is it a problem? The Washington Post. [https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2018/08/14/laverne-cox-lambastes-deadnaming-what-is-it-and-why-is-it-a-problem/;accessed March 22, 2019].

Clements KC (nd.). What does it mean to misgender someone? Healthline. [https://www.healthline.com/health/transgender/misgendering; accessed  March  21, 2019].

Clements KC (2017, October 19). What is dead naming? Healthline. [https://www.healthline.com/health/transgender/deadnaming;  accessed   March   21, 2019].

Cox Laverne (nd.). Laverne’s story…[https://lavernecox.com/about/; accessed May 17, 2019].

Dynarski Wiktor (ed.) (2016). “To nie są żadne chore fantazje.” Osoby transpłciowe wobec pracparlamentu nad ustawą o uzgodnieniu płci.[http://transfuzja.org/download/publikacje/fatazje2016compressed.pdf;        accessed February 8, 2018].

Dynarski   Wiktor,   jąderek   Izabela,   kłonkowska    Anna   M.   (eds.)   (2016). Transpłciowa młodzież w polskiej szkole. Raport z badań.[http://transfuzja.org/download/publikacje/transplciowa_mlodziez.pdf;       accessed February 8, 2018].

Dennis Riley J. (2017). Misgendering trans people is an act of violence | Riley J. Dennis [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-u5gYxXHoA; accessed March 20, 2019].

Ferguson, Sian. (2014). 3 examples of everyday cissexism. Everyday Feminism.[https://everydayfeminism.com/2014/03/everyday-cissexism/; accessed May 25, 2019].

Hall Francesca (2015). Getting Started. A toolkit for preventing and tackling homo-phobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in secondary schools. [http://www.stonewall.org.uk/sites/default/files/getting_started_a_toolkit_for_sec-ondary_schools.pdf; accessed February 8, 2018].

Haas Ann P., Rodgers Philip L., Herman  Jody L. (2014). Suicide attempts among transgender and gender non-conforming adults.

[https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/AFSP-Williams-Suicide- Report-Final.pdf; accessed February 7, 2018].

Hamann Christopher C. (2014). Trans enough: trans/gender identities and (mis)repre- sentation in social work. [http://scholarworks.smith.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1876&context=theses;accessed February 5, 2018].

Hope Sam (2014). Please use my pronouns! A feminist challenging transphobia.[https://feministchallengingtransphobia.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/please-use-my-pronouns/; accessed May 29, 2019].

Kondracki Jerzy A., Davies Norman, Hutchinson Dawson Andrew, Jasiewicz Krzysztof, Smogorzewski Kazimierz Maciej, Roos Hans, Wandycz Piotr S. (2019). Poland. In Encyclopædia Britannica online.[https://www.britannica.com/place/Poland/Government-and-society; accessed March 23, 2019].

Lubnauer Katarzyna (2015). Senat – czy to się leczy farmakologicznie? Liberté! [https://liberte.pl/senat-czy-to-sie-leczy-farmakologicznie/; accessed May 20, 2019].

Pareles Jon (2016). Anohni: Embracing a new name, and sound. The New York Times.[https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/24/arts/music/anohni-embracing-a-new-name-and-sound.html; accessed March 21, 2019].

Pavlíček Antonín (2005). Anonymity on the internet and its influence on the communication process. Prague: Charles University. PhD dissertation [accessed December 23, 2018].

Reynolds Daniel (2016). Meet the second-ever transgender Oscar nominee. The Advocate.[https://www.advocate.com/film/2016/1/14/meet-second-transgender-oscar-nominee; accessed March 21, 2019].

St. Patrick Joli (2017). What you’re really saying when you misgender. The Body Is Not an Apology.[https://thebodyisnotanapology.com/magazine/what-youre-really-saying-when-you-misgender/; accessed March 23, 2019].

Szewczyk Paula (2017). “Jestem gejem i homofobem”. Niemożliwe? Newsweek Polska. [https://w ww.newsweek.pl/polska/spoleczenstwo/homofobia-oraz-transfobia-wewnatrz-srodowiska-lgbt/1shc23c; accessed March 22, 2019].

Talusan Meredith (2015, April 2). Being transgender in a transphobic society leads to moments of sheer desperation. The Guardian. [https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/apr/02/being-transgender-in-a-transphobic-society-leads-to-moments-of-sheer-desperation; accessed November 11, 2018].

Turner Lewis, Whittle Stephen, Combs Ryan (2009). Transphobic Crime in the European Union. London: Press For Change [accessed March 23, 2019].

Wasiak-Radoszewski  Aleksander  (nd.).  Transfobia.  RÓWNOŚĆ.INFO. [https://rownosc.info/dictionary/transfobia/; accessed March 23, 2019].

 

 

Pierwotną wersją czasopisma jest wersja elektroniczna publikowana w internecie.

Czasopismo ukazuje się w sposób ciągły on-line