Institute of Sociology
of the Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology
of the Russian Academy of Sciences

Gender-Sexual Transmobility as a Normative Challenge in a Posthuman World

Gender-Sexual Transmobility as a Normative Challenge in a Posthuman World. Vestnik Tomskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Filosofiya. Sotsiologiya. Politologiya – Tomsk State University Journal of Philosophy, Sociology and Political Science. 2019. 48. pp. 112–125.
ISSN 1998-863X
DOI 10.17223/1998863Х/48/11

Posted on site: 12.06.19

Текст статьи/выпуска на сайте журнала URL: (дата обращения 12.06.2019)


The article engages with consequences that currently proliferating practice of reinvention of gender-sexual identities has for the normative order of society. An emerged posthuman era is featured by morphological freedom (A. Sandberg, et al.) conceived as a civil right of a person to modify their own body on their own terms. As a consequence, we can observe major normative morphogenesis in the domain of gender binary system. Longstanding cultural assumption that male-female dualities are natural and immutable is now rejected as a socially constructed system of patriarchy and male privilege in pre-modern and modern societies. Increasing number of transgender and transsexual passings around the world, as a part of much wider phenomenon of visceral trans-mobility, challenges primordial ascriptive heteronormativity.  In this context, of sociological interest is the question of how current normative morphogenesis is embedded into socio-normative order, or whether there are any restrictions and barriers to prevent dismantling of ascriptive constraints in the posthumanized society.  The proposed idea is that normative morphogenesis in the domain of ascriptive gender status allocation is accompanied with consistent maintenance of heteronormativity on deeper sex assignment system. Although there are many countries worldwide (from Nepal to Canada) that have recently recognized non-binary sexual statuses allowing individuals legally assign ‘third’ sex, reluctance to recognizing sexual trans-mobility on mundane sexual level, as well as on unconscious intentions, and institutional medical and legal activities continues to keep on. Based on secondary analysis of relevant surveys’ data, case-studies, evo-devo ideas, psychoanalysis, the main inference of the article is about the rigidness of morphotaxis (as opposite to morphogenesis), a latent mechanism functioning to preserve the primordial social order by the way of persistent reproduction of heteronormativity. Elaborating on Axel Honneth’s theory of the struggle for recognition, it is concluded that the structures of non-recognition reproduced in the process of normative morphotaxis still matter and will not be eliminated by emerging opportunities of morphological freedom, but will ever find ways to contain trans-mobility in the domain of gender-sexual normative system for the sake of survival of humankind that is possible on the evolutionary foundation of sexual binary only.