Sex without law, power without a king: sexuality, gender and identity in the travestite's daily life

In this work we propose to question how the speeches on sexuality, gender and sexual identity are built and validated, emerging from the life story of three homosexual brothers who were born in the inland areas of the Brazilian northeast. When they were still young, they migrated to Diadema, in São Paulo, where in the course of time, they became transvestites and sex professionals. The perception of homosexuality was reported as part of childhood and sensed as a natural force. Now, the modifications made in the body due to "travestilidade", the decision on prostitution, the sex orientation (to men or to women) and the building of a sexual identity (gay or transvestite), came to view as fields dissociated from each other and related to the search of individual and social valorization before the stigma attached to the effeminate, poor and migrant gay. The Afro-Brazilian religiosity and the Yoruba grammar assumed relevance to the constitution of this possibility of identity.

Transvestism/Travestilidade; Gender; Sexuality; Sexual Identity


Núcleo de Estudos de Gênero - Pagu Universidade Estadual de Campinas, PAGU Cidade Universitária "Zeferino Vaz", Rua Cora Coralina, 100, 13083-896, Campinas - São Paulo - Brasil, Tel.: (55 19) 3521 7873, (55 19) 3521 1704 - Campinas - SP - Brazil
E-mail: cadpagu@unicamp.br