In Other News: Caitlyn Jenner & Gender Identity

transgender symbol

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL to find research inspiration.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

When Bruce Jenner sat down with Diane Sawyer, he openly discussed a battle he has been fighting for most of his life. And on 24 April, he let the world in on his secret: Bruce Jenner, American hero athlete and reality pseudo-star, is transgender. Though Jenner is an actual stranger to most of us, many people do feel that they know Bruce. They may have seen him on TV, or on a magazine cover. They may have rooted for him all those years ago as he seemed to embody America’s battle against the USSR. Because of this unique position and circumstance, Jenner’s revelations and transition are special. For the first time, perhaps ever, most of the country (if not the world) can truly say they know someone who identifies as transgender. On ` June, the world said goodbye to Bruce, and hello to Caitlyn Jenner. She is who she has always been, and is now sharing her battle to be herself, and her appearance, with the world.

Caitlyn is the most recent in a growing list of main-stream transgender people. In 2007, Candis Cayne turned heads as Billy Baldwin’s mistress for 11 episodes on ABC’s Dirty Sexy Money, marking the first time a trans character appeared for more than a single episode on prime time American television. Chaz Bono began his transition in 2008, after suffering for years with the press. Laverne Cox, one of the stars of Orange is the New Black, became the first transgender person to appear on the cover of Time Magazine (May 2014) for an article titled “The Transgender Tipping Point.” Andreja Pejic (Instagram) was the first transgender model to appear in Vogue magazine while Hari Nef (Instagram) signed with modeling agency IMF earlier this year, a first for the powerhouse agency. There are others, famous and not, making changes every day.

Less 1/3 of 1% of the U.S. population identify as transgender (Source). Historically, this group is the recipients of an extremely disproportionate amount of violence, 20% of murders and 40% of violence by police. (Source) More recent statistics for the first quarter of 2014 show that 10% of violent crimes were committed against trans kids under 18. Kids.They were beaten, stabbed, stoned, shot, hanged, strangled, and dismembered. (Source) Sometimes by strangers; sometimes by family. Too often, they kill themselves.

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In Other News: Martin Luther King Jr.

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

That the marches which fueled the Civil Rights Movement occurred 50 years ago is unbelievable. How can it be 50 years already… and how can it only have been 50 years? Present history will tell us that race relations in the United States are far from equal and the conversation rages on regarding fair treatment and assumptions.

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In Other News: Hoegh Osaka

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

I’ve been a ‘newsy’ person for as long as I can remember; the story is very important to me. When I choose the topic for this post, I try to choose something which is compelling, interesting, and perhaps something which you would not typically consider as a great jumping off point for a research project. As often as possible, I try to include something “big” from news outside of the US, as being aware of the world is always important. Looking through my previous posts, there are many tragedies, sporting events and issues caused by the weather. More times than not, it’s obvious what this post should be about. But today I’m going to put a pin in the biggest story happening in the world right now, and save it for next week as events are still, and rapidly, unfolding. Les Parisiens ont été dans mes pensées pendant des jours. Mai cette fin bientôt.

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In Other News: MH17

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

This story is heart-breaking. Everything about the events in Ukraine since 17 July have not made logical or reasonable sense. A commercial airliner with 298 passengers flew, at an approved height, over a battle zone. Fighters in that area blew it out of the sky, believing only a military plane would fly there, with weapons provided by another nation. Then, for days, the same fighters laid a sordid claim to the wreckage, holding the victims and their family in some cruel, unthinkable, inhumane limbo — they held the bodies of victims; they rummaged through their belongings; they took photos. Finger pointing began immediately, and few solid answers have found their way to the surface. The black boxes have finally been turned over and international authorities have begun an increasingly difficult task of proving what happened. Based solely on facts and without pressure from any side.

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In Other News: The World Cup

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!

Soccer. Football. The beautiful game. Ready or not, here comes the World Cup! (For the sake of sanity and simplification in this post,”soccer” refers to the game with the round ball while “football” refers to game with the oblong one.)

For most of the world, the most exciting month has just begun and Brazil is the place to be. For years, soccer has been a second-class sport among Americans. While there are always die-hard exceptions, soccer has struggled to gain a serious following. Which doesn’t make any sense at all.

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