For my final project, I will be focuses on something that everyone has to deal with on a daily basis- Identity. I’m choosing to specifically hone in on how people exist and navigate within and without already set societal borders of gender, sex and sexuality.
Sad to say, one’s gender, sex and sexuality play a role and mold basically every aspect of one’s life, whether their aware or not. We come come to know our bodies, minds and selves best through understanding our identities. Some are lucky to find themselves during their youth, while others spend their whole lifetime trying to figure out how to live in their truth. Regardless whether one is able to fully internalize who they are, society has its own plans in mind. One might not agree with what society says, however, with such strict and rigid morals, it’s hard to navigate the world if you don’t follow suit. Because the society as a whole has set parameters, legal definitions and social expectations about assigned sex at birth, which help to organize our medical, legal, educational and political systems. Yet, people everyday, are finding ways to exist outside of already set rigid guidelines, following their own morals and beliefs. I myself are one of those people. And trying to exist and break through the strict borders that were socially constructed has and still have its many consequences and struggles.
Personally for me, writing this paper will allow me to not only better understand the term identity and everything that comes along with it, but also better understand myself in terms of what I learn. Sadly, majority of the topics and areas I’ll be hitting on in my essay aren’t things taught in school. Not saying you can teach someone their identity, but in terms of just the basic knowledge that comes along with helping on find who they are. And if it is brought up in a classroom setting, teachers and professors are leaving out chunks of information, forcing students to be limited of what’s really true. It wasn’t until my senior year of high school where the term Transgender was even brought up, in a positive light and we had an actual several week discussion and project on it. The same lesson that motivated me to ‘come out’ to my friends. If it wasn’t for this, I honestly don’t know when I would’ve gain the courage to feel even the slightest bit comfortable opening up about this part of me. But I do wish it was something brought up earlier in my education, so I could’ve started my transition much earlier. I could go off on multiple tangents here on similar anecdotes from several others and even myself, but I won’t and moral of the story is, the education system is honestly fucked.
No matter who an individual is or where their geographical location lies, no one is ever exempted from having an identity. However, many do not understand the basic building blocks of what comes together to form one’s identity, let alone know how to explain their own identity. The misconceptions and misinformed information that surrounds the term identity, fuels the persistent oppression of minority groups. By bringing forth this issues, I’m hoping to shine a light on a matter that doesn’t seem to get enough notirity.
My thesis will be: understanding the rigid parameters of socially accepted performances of sex, gender, and sexuality, this project will attempt to demonstrate how individuals define and find themselves within these borders, sometimes breaking through them to do so.