Trappings of Transhood (1997)

Incorporating video collage, music and interviews, Trappings of Transhood features a multicultural group of men who openly and eloquently share their thoughts on and experiences negotiating issues of culture, ethnicity, sexuality, gender indentification and the process of transition both with and without hormones and surgery.  As the first feature-length work to document the world and concerns of transgender men, including their lives and their relationships with others in the LGBT community, Trappings was widely screened internationally; the work also became the subject of academic articles in the fields of sexuality and cultural/queer studies.

Many of the transgender men featured in Trappings of Transhood have become community leaders.  Writer and public health consultant, Willy Wilkinson, was among those interviewed. Mr. Wilkinson says of the film, “Trappings of Transhood is a historic documentation of the lives of a multicultural group of transmasculine individuals at a time when few genuine representations of us existed,” said Wilkinson. “This film blew open a world of racial, cultural, gender, and sexual complexity like no other film before it, and is a smart, sexy reflection of early trans pride.”

In the introduction of “Double Cross: Trans Masculinity and Asian American Gendering,” published in the book, Violence and the Body: Race, Gender, and the State, Sel J. Wahng, PhD, says of Trappings, “… that many fundamental assumptions around masculinity – and race – are disrupted, complexified, and reorganized in new and provocative ways… Lee’s videos can be characterized by distinctly transmasculine qualities of self-reflexivity, embodiment, recoding, and performativity… His videos also serve as examples of an increasingly complex cultural and racial landscae, where multiple articulations of FTM identities, practices, experiences and bodies are the norm rather than the exceptions.

Film Credits

Directed and Produced by:
Christopher Lee
Elise Hurwitz

Chea Vincent Villanueva
Shadow Morton
Yosennio Lewis
Kory Damon-Martin
Zak Sinclair
Zach Nataf
Stephen James Siddique
Willy Wilkinson
Del Grace
Georgia Kolias

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