Nursing Clio: Trans Care Webs

A radical and necessary rethinking of trans careNursing Clio: Hil Malatino’s Trans Care asks a seemingly simple question: What does care look like in trans lives?

Trans Care begins and ends with the US medical-industrial complex. As Malatino writes, medicine is the “nexus of care most commonly associated with transness,” even as gender-confirming care remains “economically inaccessible, geographically dispersed, and rigorously gatekept.”[2] What interests Malatino in this project, however, are the networks of care that trans people have created in response to medical refusals and institutionalized transphobia more broadly. Trans folks create “arts of living that make [their lives] possible” in a world that, at its best, is only “thinly accommodating” and that, more often, is just “devastatingly hostile.”[3] Malatino is, of course, referring to the ubiquity of explicitly transphobic policies and the ever-present threat of anti-trans violence, but their focus in this book lies on less overt forms of oppression. Malatino takes great pains to show just how brutal everyday life can be for trans people in the United States as they make their way through a relentlessly cis-centric society. In the process, Trans Care brings into focus the creative and collaborative care practices that enable folks to endure these routine and, often, dehumanizing injustices.