Sexuality among the Tomboi and Travestis Term Paper by Quality Writers

Sexuality among the Tomboi and Travestis
An examination of the reproduction of sexual norms among the travestis of Brazil and the tomboi of Indonesia.
# 103112 | 1,330 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2008 | US

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This paper examines two groups of 'spectacular sexual deviants' in two sexual-cultural contexts and examines if and how they reproduce and reinforce gender and sexual norms that they are transgressing. Specifically, the paper examines the travestis of Brazil and the tomboi of Indonesia. The paper argues that, in general, the travestis of Brazil reproduce the dominant ideas about women and femininity particularly in the area of gendered beauty and sexual relationships and that the tomboi of Indonesia, reproduce the dominant notions of masculinity, which leads them to be attracted to the 'opposite' feminine sex.

From the Paper:

"Many travestis also embrace characteristics that are traditionally called 'feminine' and according to Kulick (1998) these include the tendency to gossip, be jealous and strive towards passionate love. Another way in which the travestis reinforce gender roles and definition is in their choice of boyfriends and the relationships that they have with those boyfriends, particularly sexual relationships. Travestis look for heterosexual boyfriends only and in that relationship the travestis are the 'givers' (Kulick, 1998), that is they are penetrated by the boyfriends during sexual relations, and they are never that penetrates. In this way they assume the role of the woman in the relationship. They are also expected to do the housekeeping and cooking in such a relationship. According to Kulick (1998) the boyfriends even sometimes dictate what the travestis wear and sometimes veto clothes they consider to revealing or sexy. The only oddity is the fact that it is the travestis who are the financial providers in the relationship. The boyfriend usually moved in with the travesti, and depended on him/her for food and clothing. This may seem odd in a relationship with a heterosexual male. However, travestis consider themselves men too and perhaps the role of a financial provider is not so odd when viewed in this way."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Kulick, Don. Travesti Chicago: The Chicago University Press, 1998.
  • Blackwood, E. "Gender Transgression in Colonial and Postcolonial Indonesia" The Journal of Asian Studies 64 (4) 2005: 849-879
  • Blackwood, E. "Tombois in West Sumatra: Constructing Masculinity and Erotic Desire". Cultural Anthropology, 13 (4) 1998: 491-521.

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Sexuality among the Tomboi and Travestis (2008, April 16) Retrieved April 20, 2021, from

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