18 May 2012

What Motivates Him To Learn?

One thing I have to say for my students is that they have almost uniformly been good to me. My identity is known, and I think I'm no longer a curiosity:  I don't think anyone is taking my classes so they can find out what it's like to have "the tranny prof."  Now I'm just another boring professor--which, I believe is what they expect, and even want.

Anyway, one of my courses includes readings from science and history as well as a memoir.  Of course, the subject of gender has grown prominent in our discussions, especially in light of some of the writing we've read by female historians.   That leads the class, at times, into discussions of the differences between male and female.

One student seems particularly interested.  Other students have taken notice and have even wondered aloud why he's read as much as he has on the topic.  "How can you not be interested in it?," he implores them. 

He is a bit different from the other students.  For one thing, he's older than most of them.  For another, he's lived in a few more countries, and even served in the armed forces of one of them (not the US).  And, he has other experiences most other students don't have--and some that I may never have.

However, I rather doubt he is thinking about a gender transition.  It would even surprise me if he were gay, although I think he might have an issue or two when it comes to relationships.  (He's mentioned two marriages and children.)  Still, he is  better-versed in gender transitions and surgery than most lay people I've met, and seems interested in knowing even more.   

I wonder whether he's found this blog.  Actually, it would surprise me if he hasn't.  After all, if you type my name into a Google search bar, you'll find an entry to at least one entry of this blog on the first page of search results.  If he's curious enough to learn what he's learned, I'd guess that he'd also be curious enough to do a Google search on me--and to check out this blog.

This could be interesting--for me and for the class, as well as for him.