IJT logo



Friedemann Pfäfflin,
Ulm University, Germany

Walter O. Bockting,
University of Minnesota, USA

Eli Coleman,
University of Minnesota, USA

Richard Ekins,
University of Ulster at Coleraine, UK

Dave King,
University of Liverpool, UK

Managing Editor:
Noelle N Gray,
University of Minnesota, USA

Editorial Assistant:
Erin Pellett,
University of Minnesota, USA

Editorial Board


book Historic Papers


© Copyright

Published by
Symposion Publishing

ISSN 1434-4599


Citation: Pfaefflin F., Colemann E., (1997) Introduction. IJT I,1, http://www.symposion.com/ijt/ijtintro.htm

We are very pleased to present the first issue of the International Journal of Transgenderism (IJT). This electronic journal will be an important vehicle for the transmission of scholarly work in the area of transgenderism. We are at an exciting point in history where the interest in the study of transgenderism is keen and quite a bit of scholarly activity is being produced. The study of transgenderism is rapidly expanding both in quantity and in breadth. We are learning more about transgenderism from an interdisciplinary and intercultural perspective, from vast new knowledge from psychological and biomedical studies of gender identity, and from anthropological, socio-cultural and historical studies. We feel that this journal will be an important source of information and exchange of ideas from this perspective throughout the world.

We chose the term transgenderism as an umbrella term for various aspects and expressions of gender identity. Older terms like transsexualism, gender dysphoria, transvestism, and cross dressing have been found to be limiting in their understanding of gender expressions and identity. Also, many of these terms have assumed a pathological nature of these phenomena. Transgender is a new term which transcends the restricting and extant categories of gender identity, is more neutral regarding etiology, and encompasses the vast complexity of gender manifestations and identities. Certainly, the IJT will publish articles related to conceptions of transsexualism, transvestism, cross dressing, gender blending, intersex, and others. However, we hope that this term will stimulate new ways of thinking and understanding various aspects of transgenderism.

The name also implies our intention for the journal to be international in focus. We feel that an intercultural study of transgenderism is more likely to be enlightening. Our constructions of gender identity are very much influenced by our own socio-cultural and political frame of reference. Thus, it is through this international and intercultural exchange that we will be able to develop a better understanding of transgenderism.

The editorial board includes a broad representation of international scholars from a wide variety of disciplines. Many of the editorial board members have been longstanding members in the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association. This Association has been committed to the advancement of knowledge in the area of gender dysphoria, the improvement in medical and psychological treatment of transgendered individuals, social and legal acceptance of hormonal and surgical sex reassignment, and professional and public education on the
phenomenon of transgenderism. The Association has held biennial conferences but has never had a journal specifically devoted to this topic. We hope this journal might serve the Association members and other interested scholars. The premier issue of the Journal was designed to coincide with the 15th Symposium of the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, September of 1997.

The International Journal of Transgenderism (IJT) will publish peer-reviewed, original articles on a quarterly basis. In addition, we will republish important and seminal articles in our Archives section. With the capabilities of electronic publishing, we will be able to easily publish new books. Submission and review of manuscripts will be handled electronically and will speed the timely publication of new works. Timely information regarding transgenderism will be available quickly and easily.

We are very excited about this new publishing venture. Not only are we excited about the advent of a scientific journal devoted to a topic which we find very important, but we are excited about the ability to offer this journal electronically. We hope that this format will be a better way to disseminate knowledge and to improve communication among scholars interested in the topic of transgenderism. We welcome your submissions of your work as well as your comments and suggestions for improving the International Journal of Transgenderism.

Friedemann Pfaefflin, Eli Coleman and Walter Bockting