AbstractsLanguage, Literature & Linguistics

What are the theatrical considerations in writing a play which broadens the debate around transgender issues?

by Robert James Gilbert

Institution: Massey University
Department: English
Degree: M. Phil.
Year: 2014
Keywords: Transgender people in literature; Theatre; New Zealand
Record ID: 1297196
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10179/6519


Against a backdrop of derision and ridicule, transgender characters have been poorly represented in theatre throughout history. After lengthy interviews with two transgender subjects, consideration is given to theatrical form, narrative, and metaphor in the creation of a new stage play that explores transgender issues in contemporary society. Trans Tasmin counters the historical discrimination of transgender representation by placing the transgender characters as credible protagonists. By considering transgender representation in New Zealand plays, and examining models of socio-political plays, the debate around transgender issues is broadened beyond the realm of pantomime and grotesquery. Trans Tasmin removes transgender characters from ‘theatre-of-ridicule’ and relocates them to ‘theatre-ofacceptance’.