Photo courtesy of Marta Kochanek

I am a social researcher, specialising in transgender studies, women’s studies, and feminist theory.

I completed my PhD at the University of Warwick in 2016. My thesis looked at how trans health is differently understood within trans community spaces, activist groups and professional literatures, and how this can have important consequences for access to care. I have written a book based on this work: Understanding Trans Health.

In addition to trans health, my research interests include ethnography and autoethnography, feminist theory, Internet studies, gender studies, queer theory, and trans cultural studies. I have written extensively on these topics, plus edited two books (The Emergence of Trans and TERF Wars) and a special issue of the journal Sexualities (Trans Genealogies).

I am currently Research Coordinator for the Trans Learning Partnership, Visiting Research Fellow in the Department of Sociology at the University of Surrey, and Visiting Researcher in the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds. I am a member of the British Sociological Association, the World Professional Association for Transgender Health and the Feminist Studies Association of the UK and Ireland. I sit on the editorial boards of The Sociological Review and the Community Development Journal. You can read about some of the conferences and academic events I have run on this page.


wormboys. Photo by Sean Pugh.

I’m also an activist, punk musician, DJ, conference organiser and DIY gig promoter. I currently play bass in wormboys and perform vocals in Dispute Settlement Mechanism.

I have previously also played in doom metal band Abandoned Life, punk trio Not Right, and folk rock group Bad News Everyone. I have organised gigs as part of the Revolt! feminist punk collective, and through Rolling Head Promotions.

During the 2000s and early 2010s I was an elected representative in the National Union of Students, volunteering on both the NUS LGBT Campaign committee and NUS Women’s Campaign committee (for which I was the first elected trans representative). I also worked as a staff writer for Lesbilicious, and was involved in activism through the Trans Youth Network.

This website has grown organically around the blog, which pre-dates my academic career. At various times it has been known as Trans Youth Takes On World, Writings of a Trans Activist, and Trans Activist Takes On World. In the early days of the blog I wrote anonymously, so in some older posts I refer to myself in the third person.


Old blog banner

Today, the ‘blog’ section of this website is updated sporadically. I typically use it to discuss news and issues relating to trans health and feminism, and share new publications, but this can vary. All views are (or were!) my own, or those of guest authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer or organisations I am affiliated with.

(last updated: 11th August 2020)

3 thoughts on “About

    • Hah, that’s definitely a compliment. And we are most certainly a rapid offensive unit.

      We are actually named for a function of the World Trade Organisation, although conveniently the initials DSM also stand for a few other things of thematic relevance…

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