Thomas Page McBee defines the concept of “trans time,” and how the trans experience can be a torch into the future for all of us.
TRANS TIME TRAVEL
A Mind-Bending Journey Across Continents, Centuries, and Dimensions
by Thomas Page McBee
(via Levine Greenberg Rostan)
Thomas Page McBee is at 42, he writes, one of the oldest trans people he knows, an “elder,”—and he’s also 12, “a man without a boyhood, alive at the end of the world.” Time is linear, but it’s also cyclical. This moment, with its fever-pitch of anti-trans rhetoric, a broken political system, not to mention climate change, can feel like the end of the world—as have other moments in our history. And yet, as Thomas writes, “the future is already here.” The seeds of what is to come already exist. We need to be asking different and better questions.
This books takes us through time and space and through the ideas that Thomas finds himself obsessed with: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein; queer history of the American West; the story of Brandon Teena, subject of the film “Boys Don’t Cry” and the first trans person Thomas ever heard of; how the media, the medical system, the prison system, the archives have all told trans stories.
Thomas Page McBee’s TV and screenwriting career has been enormously successful, with several collaborations with Elliott Page and others, including for an adaptation on Amateur that HBO has momentum behind. He’s been praised by some of the most iconic writers of our generation, from Roxane Gay to Maggie Nelson. His work as a journalist is highly sought after, from the current piece on Mary Shelley he’s writing for Travel and Leisure to a T Magazine feature commissioned by Hanya Yanagihara.