On 5 November, NOG PhD Lieke Hettinga will defend their thesis titled Appearing Differently: Disability and Transgender Embodiment in Contemporary Euro-American Visual Cultures. In their dissertation, they examine how contemporary cultural practices shape and reimagine the legibility and intelligibility of disability and transgender embodiment. Through an analysis of various aesthetic practices, Hettinga brings forth critical approaches to the connections between transness, disability, and visual culture.

Trans-Crip Adjacencies
Situated at intersections of experiences of transness and disability, the aesthetic practices under review in this dissertation enact significant critiques pertaining to questions of inclusion and visibility. In doing so, these aesthetic practices allow for a consideration of the complex affinities between transness and disability in ways that academic disciplines of transgender studies and disability studies have not yet fully explored. Leaning on insights from disability studies, crip theory, and disability justice activism, Hettinga warns of splitting transgender politics from a disability perspective. Rather, transgender liberation and disability justice can be considered as sharing corresponding subjects of concern and entangled approached to embodiment.

Rethinking the Frameworks of Recognition
In their dissertation, Hettinga conceptualises transness and disability as ‘adjacent’ to each other, exploring the complex ways in which they implicate each other. As such, through this dual interrogation of how trans-crip appearances are both visually and epistemologically consolidated, they underscore the urgency of rethinking the frameworks of recognition through which transness and disability become both visually legible and epistemologically intelligible.

Details PhD Defense
Date: Friday November 5, 2021
Time: 10.15-11.15
Location: Due to Covid-19 the PhD defense is hybrid. You can follow the ceremony through this livestream 
Title: Appearing Differently. Disability and Transgender Embodiment in Contemporary Euro-American Visual Cultures
Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Rosemarie Buikema, Dr. C.L. Quinan and Dr. K.C. Thiele