Samy Nour Younes: A short history of trans people's long fight for equality
Samy Nour Younes is a trans actor and activist who highlights the diversity of the trans experience -- not just in their struggles, but also in their triumphs. Full bio
Double-click the English transcript below to play the video.
I get this question a lot.
of American adults
about 16 percent of non-trans Americans
this may seem like a new topic.
to the Pacific Islands and beyond,
who recognize multiple genders,
and Pakistan, for example,
as 2,000 years ago in the Kama Sutra.
each have their own terms,
the umbrella term "two-spirit."
in their communities,
the spread of colonialism
and trans practices.
who presented as men
their lives as women,
continued to live as men.
confined to an asylum
for the rest of his life.
of self-described androgynes
against the world's bitter persecution.
one of the earliest trans support groups.
were starting to study trans medicine,
by their trans patients,
who had corresponded extensively
for public cross-dressing.
like Alfred Kinsey
and the famous Christine Jorgensen,
her very public transition in 1952.
were forming their own support networks,
had to carve their own path.
walked in drag balls.
for their gender expression
on the forefront of seminal events
at Cooper Do-nuts in 1959,
and Marsha P. Johnson,
for equal treatment under the law,
higher rates of discrimination,
and the looming AIDS epidemic.
to disenfranchise trans people
taken in Berlin in 1933,
they considered un-German.
is that included in this massive pile
for Sexual Research.
the trans movement in America,
and his peers in Germany
an early advocate for LGBT people.
of trans individuals.
medical services and IDs.
the Berlin Police Department
for trans research around the world.
to erase trans people,
why trans people are suddenly everywhere,
that we've been here.
that have been buried by time.
but our struggles have been forgotten
that makes trans issues seem new.
who think that our movement
telling us all to be patient,
trans people have been demanding equality.
of color who are murdered
to realize they're not alone.
was an anomaly that would die with me.
of otherness into my mind,
anyone else like me.
to find a source of pride
vibrant community of people
even when others won't,
even when we are struggling,
ABOUT THE SPEAKERSamy Nour Younes - Actor, activist
Samy Nour Younes is a trans actor and activist who highlights the diversity of the trans experience -- not just in their struggles, but also in their triumphs.
Why you should listen
Samy Nour Younes's most recent credits include Into the Woods (Ford's Theater), The Triumphant and Pay No Attention to the Girl (Target Margin Theater), and Well Intentioned White People (Barrington Stage). He can also be seen on season four of Transparent.
As an activist, Nour Younes served on the leadership teams of the DC Area Transmasculine Society and the Baltimore Transgender Alliance. He has coorganized rallies for Pride, Transgender Day of Remembrance and more. He also leads panels on the barriers trans people face in accessing health care and has participated in national ad campaigns to promote awareness of LGBTQ+ issues.
Nour Younes was the cohost of insighT with Consuella Lopez, a DC-based online talk show with an all-trans panel. He aims to highlight the diversity of the trans experience -- not just in their struggles, but also in their triumphs. As of 2019, he has written one ten-minute play, Ancestral Lines and Other Tall Tales, which will be published in the upcoming Latinx Archive. He is currently developing two new works, including a solo show, both of which he aims to premiere in 2019.
Samy Nour Younes | Speaker | TED.com