1st Edition

Trans Representations in Contemporary, Popular Cinema The Transgender Tipping Point

By Niall Richardson, Frances Smith Copyright 2023
    198 Pages 26 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    198 Pages 26 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book analyses how contemporary genre cinema represents trans-identified characters.

    Informed by key debates within transfeminism, queer theory, contemporary trans studies – and engaging with the concerns voiced by gender critical feminism – this culturally oriented book critiques the representation of trans characters in a range of cinematic genres, including the musical, period costume drama, the road movie, melodrama, coming-of-age stories, and romances. The case studies address the ways in which trans identifications have been coded within the narrative and stylistic expectations of the genres. Are genre films successful in affirming trans identifications or do they reinforce trans stereotypes and anti-trans discourses?

    This is a timely and accessible book, which addresses Anglophonic, European and Latin American cinemas, and is ideal for students studying courses in Film Studies, Media Studies, Cultural Studies or Gender Studies.

    Introduction: Transing Genres; 1: Film Musicals; 2: Heritage Cinema; 3: Road Movies; 4: Melodrama; 5: Coming of Age Dramas; 6: Romance; Conclusion: Gender Critical Feminism


    Niall Richardson convenes MA Gender and Media at the University of Sussex. He is the author of the monographs The Queer Cinema of Derek Jarman: Critical and Cultural Readings (2009), Transgressive Bodies: Representations in Film and Popular Culture (2010) and Ageing Femininity on Screen: The Older Woman in Contemporary Cinema (2019). His research focuses on the representation of minority groups in film and media – especially how these intersect with gender and sexuality.

    Frances Smith is a senior lecturer in film at the University of Sussex. She is the author of Rethinking the Hollywood Teen Movie: Genre, Gender and Identity (2017); Bande de Filles: Girlhood Identities in Contemporary France (2020); and, with Timothy Shary, is co-editor of Refocus: The Films of John Hughes (2021) and Refocus: The Films of Amy Heckerling (2016). Her research focuses on contemporary US and European youth cinemas.