Unknowable Bodies, Unthinkable Sexualities: Lesbian and Transgender Legal Invisibility in the Toronto Women’s Bathhouse Raid

Lamble, Sarah (2009) Unknowable Bodies, Unthinkable Sexualities: Lesbian and Transgender Legal Invisibility in the Toronto Women’s Bathhouse Raid. Social and Legal Studies, 18 (1). pp. 111-130. ISSN 0964-6639. (Access to this publication is restricted)

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Abstract

Although litigation involving sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination claims has generated considerable public attention in recent years, lesbian and transgender bodies and sexualities still remain largely invisible in Anglo-American courts. While such invisibility is generally attributed to social norms that fail to recognize lesbian and transgender experiences, the capacity to ‘not see’ or ‘not know’ queer bodies and sexualities also involves wilful acts of ignorance. Drawing from R v Hornick (2002) a Canadian case involving the police raid of a women’s bathhouse, this paper explores how lesbian and transgender bodies and sexualities are actively rendered invisible via legal knowledge practises, norms and rationalities. I argue that limited knowledge and limited thinking not only regulate the borders of visibility and belonging, but play an active part in shaping identities, governing conduct and producing subjectivity.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: visibility; embodiment; intelligibility; governmentality; queer regulation
Subjects: J Political Science > JC Political theory
K Law > K Law (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > Kent Law School > Centre for Law, Gender and Sexuality
Depositing User: S.R. Lamble
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2009 10:36
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2011 02:39
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/18251 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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