Firstly we discuss about the introduction of research topic
“Tansvestism as deviance”.
Clothing is only outward symbol to represent your chosen on the
basis of basic internal psychological situations. The transvestites
periodically want to be free of the rigid demands of being a man, with the
attendant requirement for-masculinity. As a man, the transvestites expected to
perform a sex role which he may sometimes want to avoid. When dressed in
woman’s clothing, the transvestite feels freer to express tenderness, grace,
and other qualities which society defines as feminine. Dressing enables him to
relax and express the suppressed side of his nature. As one respondent put it
“I feel a gender comfort when I cross-dress. I feel relaxed, very passive
and warm. I am very aggressive person when acting out my male role – very
dominant. When I dress as a woman, I feel this offsets the other side of my
personality. I feel more together. Although I am a man, I envy qualities of
females sensitivity to others, and gentleness”.
Many actors and actresses find their work rewarding because they
can portray other people enmeshed with a different set of expectations. Costume
parties give one the same sort of fulfillment. A transvestite who goes out in
public and passes as a woman gains immense satisfaction in enacting the role. I
love to go out in public dressed as a woman. It’s amazing how many people take
me for a female. I ride on buses and shop when dressed. I really get kick out fooling
people. It’s amazing how many people take appearance for granted.
The power of conventional definitions of masculinity leads many transvestites
to accept the dominant society’s lowly evaluation of them. They interact with
normal, defined by the mainstream conception of male sexual orientation. They
feel ambivalent about themselves, and manifest feelings of alienation from
self. This condition manifests itself as a form of self-hate beginning at a
young age. Many older transvestites buy clothes and later destroy them from a
sense of guilt and disgust with themselves.
Deviants try to nullify the negative status which others accord
them by 4 processes: 1) denial; 2) excepting; 3) excusing; and 4) normalizing (Mageo, 1996).
Transvestites who dress secretively alone tend to deny their
deviance in order to escape stigma. Several respondents implicitly used denial when
they could not admit in plain age that they were one of those people. ‘Many
transvestites stress that they are conventional in all other aspects of their
lives. In their self-image, they point out that they are many things, such as a
good father, husband, and worker. These good qualities mitigate the stigma.
Excusing is the third form of neutralization. Blame is deflected to a force
beyond the transvestite’s control. The transvestite sees his compulsion as
similar to that of the alcoholic. Some use the assumption of biological
determinism, that their compulsion is in the genes, or that they happen to have
excess female hormones. Some cite the astrological influence of stars and planets
which chart their destiny. Others claim reincarnation from a previous life when
they were a woman.
Normalization is the transvestite’s stratagem to condemn conventional
behavior, and praise their own honesty. One respondent said: “All people
contain the potential for Tansvestism but it is repressed by society.1t another
claimed: “Women are becoming more assertive and entering the world of work
but men are afraid to express their feminine qualities such as tenderness and
gentleness (Kaplan & Rogers,
1990). Cross-dressing helps me to do this. Such statements seem to
provide a springboard for action, and manifest what can be labeled conversion
from stigma that is a sense of rebirth into a new identity. A similar process
is identified among homosexuals (K. Gauthier & J.
For the transvestite, this is the assumption of the androgynous ideal. Sexual
humor is another way of dealing with the inner conflict. Transvestite jokes and
cartoons are attempts to find a socially acceptable means of expressing the egression
and conflict. Such humor is private, and is limited to the transvestite
The term rationalization is inappropriate. It is a conversion
process, and the statements or beliefs. The transvestites also deal with ambivalent
feelings by showing displaced aggression toward homosexuals. They are particularly
sensitive to the drag queen homosexual whose parading in women’s clothing tends
to give the heterosexual transvestite a bad name in the public mind (Baker, 1994).
they do not want to be considered deviant, they enact a masculine image and,
try to normalize their cross-dressing by presenting it as another hobby. So, many
transvestites tend to stay secret in order to avoid being labeled as deviant.
To avoid guilt and secrecy, they have also created groups and formed
sub-cultures that reflect their ideology of femininity (Prince & Bentler, 1972).Thus, we can say that
transvestites are doubly deviant. Firstly, they deviate from the mainstream, as
they present a non-normative behavior and secondly, they present a
non-normative behavior, but unlike most deviants, they are part of the mainstream
when not cross-dressing (Bacigalupo, 2004).
first, most transvestites accept the conventional condemnation of this
behavior. The transvestites feel shame, disgust, and guilt. Still, they feel
completed to explore their desire by using women’s clothing, cosmetics, and
mannerisms. They derive sexual, esthetic, and escapist satisfaction. Confronted
with the contradiction between their conventional values and their deviance,
they rationalize to mitigate their conflicted sense of self.
should be helped in order to make them acceptable citizen of society. Deviant
behavior also reflects the negativity transvestites are facing. Whereas no
suitable measures have been taken in regards to give rightful share and status
to this community in the society as to adopt them as what they are. Disproval
to this lifestyle also stems from religious and patriarchal beliefs. They are
deviant because their families disowned them.
purpose of the study was to study the factors that lead an individual towards