Dissertation Sketching | aE 2024 | Garduno

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This is one of my favorite photographs in a. klass’s portfolio, it is the cover picture of a carousel titled “t4t4t pt II (verticals)” (‘t4t’ is a common acronym, used online but also previously in periodicals and other media, that indicates a “trans-for-trans” sexual/romantic orientation or desire, nowadays it is also a Grindr tag that contains metadata go figures! an interesting question about data sexuality and identity that might play into my work! okay, rambling parenthesis). They are one of my favorite photographers, their work focuses on representing many different queer experiences. This picture in particular evokes so many feelings for me because of its affective domesticity. In the picture three trans humans can be seen sitting in a bathroom. One of them is wearing a BDSM leather chest harness and is injecting what I infer is HRT onto the tattooed arm of one of their partners. The person being injected (middle) is looking towards their other partner, who is applying makeup on their face.  In many ways this picture displays transnes in a very counter-hegemonic way: trans people are inside of a home, they are being cared for/caring for others, they are accessing affirming tools (hormones, makeup). The joy and peacefulness of this image is precisely the type of affect that I would like my work to convey. Notably, conrtadictory with dominant narratives about transness and gender/sexual dissidence.

Photograph by: a. klass (they/them) 

Right front: Landon St. James (he/they)

Middle front: King (they/them)

Middle back: Mx Jade (she/her/they/them/siya) 

Cover of Hijab Butch Blues A Memoir

Cover of Hijab Butch Blues a Memoir

This is the cover of Hijab Butch Blues a memoir by Lamya H.that follows her story as a queer hijabi butch that follows her coming of age (in terms of sexuality, migration, and gender identity) and how her faith and muslim identity interact with some of these questions. This is a blurb from the book’s website: "From that moment on, Lamya makes sense of her struggles and triumphs by comparing her experiences with some of the most famous stories in the Quran. She juxtaposes her coming out with Musa liberating his people from the pharoah; asks if Allah, who is neither male nor female, might instead be nonbinary; and, drawing on the faith and hope Nuh needed to construct his ark, begins to build a life of her own--ultimately finding that the answer to her lifelong quest for community and belonging lies in owning her identity as a queer, devout Muslim immigrant.” 

Though I haven’t read in full, this cover speaks to me because of the way it meshes many different (and maybe even contradictory in mainstream discourses) signifiers: a hijab, the wink at Stone Butch Blues transmasculine/butch manifesto par excellence, the art style of the figure, a brown gendered person taking up space in the cover. 

First: I should read this book. By just looking at the cover though, I am curious to think about how I could use a similar strategy in designing the cover of my book: weaving together the complex, transnational, contradictory, and unique stories of transness, race, and nationality that undercut my research interests. 


Our Work is Everywhere

This is the cover of Syan Rose’s  book Our Work is Everywhere: an illustrated history of queer and trans resistance. Everytime I see it (it is on my bookshelf) I get a new thing out of it, I am able to observe something different from the cover art. The entire book is filled with potential reference images and cover ideas. I will bring it to class! 

In the cover you can see a body with two faces, with one arm holding a candle and one arm holding a megaphone. From each of these tools a pink cloud emerges and holds the title of the book. It makes me think of protests, prayer, and dance floors.


Los 41

Lxs 41

This is another image that I would like to invoke. I am not entirely sure how to add some symbolism for it because it is far closer to transfemininity than transmasculinity and I would not want to misrepresent las Vestidas like that. However, the 41 is such an important symbol for Mexican queer history (people recognize it! I have one tattooed and have had several conversations about that triggered by a moment of recognition…in a way symbolic recognition) and that pushes me to think about ways of incorporating some sort of representation of this moment in the cover of the book.


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Created date

May 21, 2024

Cite as

Sab Garduno. 21 May 2024, "Dissertation Sketching | aE 2024 | Garduno", Center for Ethnography, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 24 May 2024, accessed 21 June 2024. http://centerforethnography.org/content/dissertation-sketching-ae-2024-garduno