sam elkin bent street
Photo: Sam Elkin (supplied).
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Bent Street journal special issue focusing on trans community

The latest edition of LGBTIQA+ journal Bent Street, titled ‘Soft Borders, Hard Edges’, brings a special focus to the trans and gender diverse community. 

Sam Elkin and Yves Rees of the Spilling the T writing collective, along with Tiffany Jones, have edited a fantastic collection of essays, opinion pieces, poems, images, and stories from the community.

 “I suspect readers will be struck by the penetrating insight of trans subjectivity,” said Rees. 

“More and more, I believe our position on the margins forces trans people to become experts in all things gender, bodies, and identity. 

“We see nuances that often elude the cis gaze. 

“That distinctive trans ability to dissect how gender works – for all people, cis and trans – is something that shines through in this edition of Bent Street.

te ascension of non cis jesus guy james wentworth

Pictured is artist Guy James Whitworth’s piece The Ascension of Non-Cis Jesus.

Whitworth is among dozens of creatives whose work is highlighted in the new issue.

Elkin said that editing the issue had been “a treat”.

“Collaborating with Bent Street gave us the opportunity to create a national anthology of writers from far beyond Naarm [Melbourne], where we’re both based. 

“I also love seeing hugely influential thinkers like Professor Emerita Raewyn Connell included alongside emerging trans and gender diverse writers, some of whom are first-time authors. 

“I’ve always adored the eclectic nature of Bent Street; it’s an intergenerational queer party where everyone is invited. 

“I am really proud to be able to publish ‘This Is My Story’ by Stacey Stokes, an incarcerated trans woman, as it’s too easy for us to forget that many trans women are still locked up in men’s prisons across so-called Australia.” 

Works by poets including Ruq and Anastasia Le were originally written for live storytelling at Midsumma.

“It was really satisfying getting to see these moving pieces given a new life on the page,” said Elkin.

Bent Street is available now as a paperback through the usual online platforms, as well as through Hares & Hyenas in Fitzroy and The Bookshop Darlinghurst.

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