Harold Garfinkel’s s case study of “Agnes” is broadly understood as the locus classicus of sociological research about transgender peo- ple. Drawing on an. Agnes was a year old woman with an accidental penis appendage. Studied by anthropologist Harold Garfinkel and written about in a The paper was written by one Dr. Garfinkel and his experience treating a patient called Agnes, whom he first met in November of Agnes.
|Published (Last):||7 February 2016|
|PDF File Size:||6.88 Mb|
|ePub File Size:||17.67 Mb|
|Price:||Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]|
With a very female face and body except for the terrible defect of the male genitalia — can there be a worse defect for a girl to be born with?
After the operation, Agnes still fights to conceal her past. But then it seems the author has only partially transitioned.
Whimsical, queer exploration of all things gender. She seemed perfectly at ease in normal female clothing, and her voice and manner were conventionally female. Email required Address never made public. For example she had to learn to be a ‘lady’ over quite a time span.
She saw it as ‘flattering and innocent’ to see normal sexuality as role playfar more flattering than accepting the scientific accounts of sexuality as objective in various senses. However, I can relate my initial reaction to her story, as told through the eyes of Dr.
In this way, she saw her ability to manage her identity as confirming her subjectivity as a ‘real and valuable person’ Email required Address never made public. Notify me of new comments via email.
Texual Analysis of Garfinkel’s Story of Agnes
She responded to some of Garfinkel’s questions with ‘ vagueness and amnesia’such as one which asked precisely when she became prepared to accept her status as ‘abnormal’, or or garfnikel she managed after the operation [and, later, what her sexuality had been like before the operation, whether she had ever felt sexual arousal as a man, and so on] [At this stage, Agnes’s symptoms post-operation gzrfinkel problematic.
Possibly living people Place of birth missing.
Surgery was done in by a team of doctors including Elmer Belt. Correspondingly, her boyfriend was presented as percent male. She did not know what the effects would be, only that this was a female substance, and she had no idea how much to take but more or less tried to follow the amounts her mother took.
Garfinkel who saw her with him. Bill refused any contact with Garfinkel. When Garfinkel first met her, she had a penis and testicles in conjunction with secondary female characteristics such as breasts.
With some time for healing and the use of a penis shaped mould, she was able to acclimatise her new genitals such that she was able to have vaginal sex. This indicates that ‘normally sexed persons are cultural events She then suffered very badly from being denied hormones — which as vital in post-surgical healing and maintaining mental heath. This involved a continuous project of self-improvement, a ‘secret apprenticeship’and this continued even during the interviews with Garfinkel, where she picked up tips from his questions and ‘more subtle cues’ [the mind boggles about what these might have been!
The story of Agnes – Gender recognition and surgery in the s | GenderBen!
Agnes constantly policed that division between herself and male homosexuals, claiming, for example that she found it hard to understand homosexuals, just as ‘normals’ did. She was able to keep much of her life secret, including whether she had used hormones, how she had lived with her mother, what she used her penis for, how she satisfied herself and her boy friend sexually, and whether she had any homosexual feelings. We are in sore need of better terms.
Hmm, one lives and learns, and I had not heard of him. I so hope that wonderful young woman, who might be 70 now, had, and maybe still has a good life. She was recommended for surgery as an intersex patient, at a time when such surgery was regularly denied to transgender people. Garfinkel says he decided to bluff ‘to preserve the friendship, the conspiracy, and the sense that we were in league with each other, that there were no secrets between us On one occasion, fearing that unusual hormones might be detected, she arranged to swap urine samples with a girl friend, and, on another, she got her local doctor to lie about her sex change operation to her employer.
But I could not resist this badass. Agnes is a ‘practical methodologist”self consciously equipped to teach normals how normals make sexuality happen in common place settings as the obvious, familiar, recognisable, natural and serious matter of fact’ For her, normal people also did this performing work, a significant difference from ‘normal’ perceptions.
Agnes then dropped a massive bombshell. His insistence on intercourse and marriage led to a series of quarrels, and aghes disclosed her details to him. June 19, at 1: Furthermore, there are often seriously good reasons why I may not want them to understand the facts as I do. Agnes was out to get her surgery.
Back in 22 years latermy psychiatrist, the only one in the UK with access to a surgeon, required patients to be straight and have no contact with the drag scene. June 22, at 2: Garfinkel presenting certain observations in said book chapter. There had been another source of suspicion that she had induced female characteristics by taking female hormones, and that she had permitted frequent anal intercourse.