Transgendered Persons and Feminist Strategy

26 Pages Posted: 3 May 2013

See all articles by Carissima Mathen

Carissima Mathen

University of Ottawa - Common Law Section

Date Written: 2004


The feminist movement has struggled over how to integrate transgendered persons into feminist activism, legal analysis, and politics. The issue has recently crystallized in the case of Kimberly Nixon, a male-to-female transgendered person who was refused a counseling position at the Vancouver Rape Relief and Women's Shelter. This article explores the various dimensions of the conflict, locating the Nixon case within a discussion of transgendered human rights claims and Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms equality analysis. The article challenges the strategic and legal choices made by each party. It links the difficult questions in Nixon to the limitations of rights discourse as a (feminist) (equality rights) tool. The article concludes that the best way to deal with this particular conflict is through sustained dialogue rather than further litigation.

Keywords: gender issues, transgender, feminism

Suggested Citation

Mathen, Carissima, Transgendered Persons and Feminist Strategy (2004). Available at SSRN: or

Carissima Mathen (Contact Author)

University of Ottawa - Common Law Section ( email )

57 Louis Pasteur Street
Ottawa, K1N 6N5

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics