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18 September 2007

Body Modification

Is sex change surgery (vaginoplasty, phalloplasty, metoidioplasty, electrolysis, mastectomy, hormone therapy) body modification?  Most transsexuals  don't relate to the concept of 'body modification', and the phrase is rarely found on web pages with transgender content. 
On the other hand, the Body Modification community don't seem to relate to changing sex as a type of body modification.  The Wikipedia article on Body Modification does not mention sex changes although the Category: Body Modification does have a sub category on Genital Modification which in turn has articles on Phalloplasty and Vaginoplasty.    BME, the specialist Body Modification Wiki which list 97 types of body modification does not have anything on sex changes.  
The similar yet different concept of Transhumanism which seeks to use technology to improve human bodies does acknowledge sex changes as a major step forward (although not on the Wikipedia page that I have just linked.   Here is a web page called "Transexuals Pave the Way for Transhumanists".

One individual who is into both Body Modification and being transgender is the avant-guard musician Genesis P-Orridge who describes him/her self as pandrogynous.

1 comment:

foibey said...

As a trans person (with hormonal related physical changes) who is also interested in body modification, I tie the two together in my head, going via transhumanist philosophy (which I take to the non-eugenic side of) and also seeing all modifications we make in informed consent to our bodies which we may understand as "improvements" are in a sense a sort of upgrade. I'm not heavily modified myself, (notwithstanding trans stuff, a few piercings and light cuttings, with some experimentation with heavier more temporary high gauge stuff), but there is a degree of connection for me in terms of the two things having a strong impact on me in terms of my relationship with and autonomy over my body. I may come back to this page after thinking more about something clear to say on this subject.