Swimming against a tide of oppression

Swimming has nothing to do with the gender recognition act, says Owl Fisher


Illustration by Fox Fisher


Recently, a woman who was protesting against the proposed reform of the 2004 Gender Recognition Act decided to attend a men-only swimming session. I’m sure you’re as genuinely confused as I am, as I can’t think of how a woman pretending to be a man has anything to do with trans people, yet alone their rights.


This apparently brilliant protest was supposed to highlight how easy it would be for anyone to claim whatever gender. But it’s just a harrowing reminder that I, as a young trans person, could never actually have done this. As much as I would’ve loved the confidence to declare my gender identity and have access to the women’s locker rooms, there was absolutely no way that I could have done that. I was trapped. Not in the wrong body, but in people’s perceptions of it.


As a trans person, I have a complicated relationship with swimming.





Read the rest of this article in the June issue of DIVA, available to buy in print or digitally here. Find out more about the DIVA Music Festival at divamusicfestival.com.



Only reading DIVA online? You're missing out. For more news, reviews and commentary, check out the latest issue. It's pretty badass, if we do say so ourselves.


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