Community Volunteer Program

EPL On the Edge Speaker Series


On the Edge Emerging Scholars

The Transwomen of Singapore and Bali and their Right to Live and Love

What does it mean to live a ‘disrupted’ life course? When circumstances and societies deny someone’s existence because of their gender and profession, by what means do people reconstruct their lives, reclaim their identities and sense of being, and gather the strength to survive their everyday hardships?

In Southeast Asia, considered as deviants by many, transgender women have been beaten until they bled, forced out of the family home, and continuously humiliated by the public. Many are living on the fringes of society, as evidenced by their high rates of participation in sex work. Through ethically sharing their lived experience from my fieldwork in summer of 2017, I hope that my research highlights their marginalized lives and denied existence to live and love.

Trigger Warning: This presentation may contain examples from real-life scenarios that some may find disturbing.

When: Wednesday, September 18, 2019, 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. 
Location: Program Room, Strathcona Library

About the Presenter: 

Kevin Chavez Laxamana is Master’s student in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Alberta and a 2018 Fellow for the Chair in Transgender Studies and the Transgender Archives at the University of Victoria. He is currently writing his thesis on the disrupted life cycles of Singaporean and Balinese transgender women sex workers by analyzing their diverse experiences, histories, and stories of transitioning and de-transitioning (in relation to hormone therapies and sexual reassignment surgeries, participation in beauty and/or sex work, religion, romantic and familial relationships, and concepts of national belonging). To learn more about his work, please visit his personal website:


About On the Edge: Speaker Series

On the Edge is a speaker series featuring cutting edge research presented by scholars and researchers from Edmonton's academic community. It is presented by the University of Alberta's Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research and hosted at the Strathcona Library Branch every month. Everyone is invited to attend these sessions.

To learn how to be a presenter for "On the Edge", please contact or Charity Slobod at