“I Am Not My Bodies:” Transgender Identity and Embodiment in Nina Arsenault’s The Silicone Diaries

  • Zaren Healey White Memorial University of Newfoundland
Keywords: Transgender, embodiment, gender representations, body modification, autobiography

Abstract

This article examines transgender embodiment through analysis of Canadian transgender performance artist Nina Arsenault and her autobiographical play The Silicone Diaries (2012b). I discuss Arsenault’s life writing, plays, and self-portraiture to explore how her pursuit of an exaggerated ideal of beauty simultaneously subverts essentialist notions of what it means to be a woman.

This paper was awarded the second prize in the Women’s and Gender Studies et Recherches Féministes (WGSRF) Graduate Essay Prize competition in 2014.

Résumé
Cet article examine l’intégration transgenre au moyen de l’analyse de l’artiste de performance canadienne transgenre Nina Arsenault et de sa pièce autobiographique The Silicone Diaries (2012b). Je parle de la vie, de l’écriture, des pièces et de l’autoportrait d’Arsenault pour explorer comment sa poursuite d’un idéal exagéré de la beauté subvertit simultanément les notions essentialistes de ce que signifie être une femme.

Cet article a remporté le deuxième Prix de l’essai (cycles supérieurs) de l’association Women’s and Gender Studies et Recherches Féministes (EGFRF) en 2014.

Author Biography

Zaren Healey White, Memorial University of Newfoundland

Zaren Healey White completed a Master of Gender Studies at Memorial University (2016), having previously earned a Master of Arts in English at McGill University. Zaren’s work has been published in Theatre Research in Canada (2013) and At The Edge (2012). She is employed as a Communications Coordinator at Memorial University in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

References

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Published
2016-10-28