by Davina Cooper | Photo: Ben Kanter
Legal gender status is currently in tremendous upheaval. What once seemed biologically settled facts – two sexes identified at birth – is now subject to a swirl of different politics. Can we change our gender? What is the relationship of gender to sex? How does gender connect to domination and to how society is organised? And what future might we hope for gender – in what it means and how it is lived?
The Future of Legal Gender project explores these questions, focusing on the specific role of law and legal gender status. The question of legal gender status is today the subject of intense political debate and policy discussion in Britain and elsewhere. We aim to contribute to wider debates and law reform processes by exploring:
- longer-term directions for legal gender (beyond the exigencies and pragmatism of parliamentary and party politics);
- how to untangle some of the conceptual differences (and stakes) in the conflicting ways that gender is understood;
- the principles that might contribute to good feminist law-making, such as equality, justice and care;
- what gender could come to mean and be.
Our first blog post takes up the problem of gender status and traces some different pathways for its reform.