my body is a bomb

digital photography by courtney trouble // concept, costuming, and sculpture by drew deveaux


My body – and all trans bodies – are too often sites of violence. Violence perpetrated against us, yes. But also – as with the ubiquitous “man in the bathroom” red herring – our trans bodies are twisted into objects of imagined violence, into gender-bending weapons of mass destruction, by those cis people bent on barring us from achieving equality.

When I proposed the notion of the cotton ceiling a few years back, the violent backlash against me was profound. Not just death threats, but, even more awful were the accusations of rape, of being “a rapist”. As a survivor of sexual assault this cut deeper than anything.

The cotton ceiling was meant as a means to question why certain bodies – trans or fat or disabled or racialized bodies for starters – are sometimes seen as undesirable, unfuckable, unlovable. It was not a violent term, but as is almost always the case, cis activists violently attacked the struggle for trans equality through making our bodies and identities intrinsically violent.

Thus, here you have “My Body is a Bomb”. A symbolic representation of the violence too often laid on Trans bodies, of the weaponization of gender equality.

Drew Deveaux, October 2014