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frameacloud: A stylized green dragon person reading a book. (A stylized green dragon person reading a)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Some highlights of what I posted to the Otherkin News Twitter (@otherkinnews) during the last few months.

About otherkin

Vice magazine ran an article about otherkin.

Journal of Language Works published an article on nounself pronouns. Cites the Nonbinary.org wiki and mentions otherkin.

Published in March, the book Youth Cultures in America briefly mentions otherkin.

A review of Danielle Kirby's book Fantasy and Belief, which writes about otherkin.

Due to the anti-transgender bathroom bills in the US during these months, newspapers ran anti-transgender opinion articles. As usual, some tried to undermine transgender people by comparing them to "trans-species." Some writers knew about otherkin, others didn’t. Cissexist hate speech isn’t worth featuring here.


Cyborg artist Neil Harbisson said at a transhumanist event, "I consider myself a transspecies because I’m adding senses and organs that other species have."

Art and glamourbombs

You know the intro scene in FernGully, with the cave wall covered in handprints from humans and tiny fairies? It's based on some actual cave art, which does feature handprints just like that. The tinier prints weren't human hands. Not fairies, either, though.

The Merrylin Cryptid Museum featured preserved remains of dragons, fairies, and other beings, all created by artist Alex CF. Since it's a hoax-like exhibit, Snopes explained it.

Snopes also had to address a viral photo of baby dragons being reintroduced to Wales, which originated as a Photoshop contest winner.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: None. A linked article talks about animal suffering.

Several articles in Transgender Studies Quarterly used keywords of interest: trans-species and tranimal.

Lindsay Kelley's article "Tranimals" notes that "The term tranimals debuted at the 2009 annual meeting of the Society for Science, Literature, and Art panel 'TRANimalS: Theorizing the Trans- in Zoontology' (Kelley and Hayward 2009)" (p. 227).

In "Transxenoestrogenesis," Eva Hayward talks about the problem of the animal source of some forms of exogenous hormone therapy. Hayward observes, "historically, human bodies hormonally sex-transitioning from male to female have always been trans-species ('tranimal') bodies" (p. 256).

The full text of the journal is freely available online.


TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly 1. 1-2 (May 2014).
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: none.

May 20 to 28. The newspaper Le Monde (est. 1944) ran an introductory article about otherkin and therianthropes. As the original article is in French, therianthrope Akhila made an English translation of it. The article covers many aspects of the topic, including history. It draws from several print and web sources, as well as interviews.


Olivier Clairouin. "Pas complètement humains : la vie en ligne des thérians et otherkins." 2014-05-20. Le Monde (online newspaper). http://www.lemonde.fr/cultures-web/article/2014/05/20/pas-completement-humains-la-vie-en-ligne-des-therians-et-otherkins_4410306_4409029.html?xtmc=otherkin&xtcr=1

Olivier Clairouin. Akhila, trans. "Not Completely Human: The Online Life of Therians and Otherkin." 2014-05-28. Beyond Awakening (blog). http://thehornedgate.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/the-online-life-of-therians-and-otherkin/
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: None.

May. The academic journal Identity: An International Journal of Theory and Research published An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of Identity in the Therian Community. This article by Timothy Grivell et al is based on interviews with five therians.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
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Content warnings: Cissexism.

October: An animated sit-com called Family Guy included a skit that parodied trans people by having a main character get "reassignment surgery" to become a lizard. An otherkin named DLF reports that this scene was in "Season 12, Episode 2, titled Vestigial Peter," and gives a transcript of the scene. A few people in the otherkin community wondered if this scene was a reference to otherkin. I'm confident that the writers weren't making a reference to therianthropes or otherkin, because the analogy the writers were making is common in cissexist jokes. Cissexist people often try to parody and undermine transsexuality by comparing it to a straw-man scenario in which a person mimics or tries to become another species.

I've seen much more offensive iterations of that tired joke than that. The most offensive one I've seen is the satirical article "Transspecied dog bites man is not news," which Jared Olar published simultaneously to Pekin Times (and several other newspapers) last March. Olar's mean-spirited and cissexist article is about a fictional six year old boy who wants to become a dog. It is supposed to be ridiculous that adults take the child seriously by speaking of the child as "transspecied," and giving him a "social transition," which includes switching to the pronoun "it." The article parodies the situation of a non-fictional young trans girl who became famous around that time, to whom Olar refers by name. Olar uses the "transspecied dog" to suggest that trans children are probably just playing make-believe, and are too young to know how they identify. I'm confident that Olar had not heard of therianthropes, otherkin, or animal people. It looks like Olar just invented the "transspecied dog" as a straw-man to pick at what Olar believes to be flaws in arguments for the legitimacy of transsexuality.


DLF (justanotherkin), untitled post. 2013-10-09. Just Anotherkin (personal blog). http://justanotherkin.tumblr.com/post/63560415302/what-episode-of-family-guy-was-that-did-it-actually
(I linked to that post with permission from DLF.)

Jared Olar, "Transspecied dog bites man is not news." 2013-03-03. Pekin Times. http://www.pekintimes.com/article/20130303/OPINION/130309948/1001/NEWS
(Warning: lots of pop-up ads, some of which even got through my ad-blockers.)
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: For this article, comparison between therianthropes and transgender people. The horror novel in question has scenes of very graphic violence.

August: Prolific writer Adam Pfeffer self-published a book titled The Incredible Tiger-Man. It’s a horror novel about a cursed man who physically shape-shifts into a tiger and kills people. In the introduction, Pfeffer compares the fictional hero's situation to some of the beliefs in the non-fictional world about animal shape-shifters. In this, Pfeffer mentioned real people who identify as therianthropes:

“Some say a person identifying with an animal is somewhat similar to gender dysphoria and transsexuality, and is known as species dysphoria and transspeciesism. The species of non-human animal with which a therian identifies with is called that person’s theriotype or phenotype” (Pfeffer, p. ix)

Pfeffer is familiar with the real therianthrope community’s jargon, and uses it correctly. If Pfeffer was involved in the therian community, he doesn’t mention it here. This is the only mention of therianthropes or any of those terms in Pfeffer’s book.


Adam Pfeffer, The Incredible Tiger-Man. Bloomington, IN: iUniverse, 2013.
The selection in question is visible in Google Books:
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings: Publicity.

Book cover.
Last April: Jay Johnston mentions otherkin in another book. It's in the book Religion and the Subtle Body in Asia and the West: Between Mind and Body. The mention is on page 189 (as well as citing Lupa's A Field Guide to Otherkin for that on page 190). A bio at the beginning of Religion and the Subtle Body says that Johnston’s "current scholarly obsessions include trans-species subcultures (especially Otherkin)" (p. xi).

Too little of the relevant passages are visible through Google Books for me to see what the chapter is titled. Gentle reader, if you would please help me out with getting the details on this one, I would appreciate it.


Geoffrey Samuel and Jay Johnston, eds., Religion and the Subtle Body in Asia and the West: Between Mind and Body. New York: Routledge, 2013.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warning: The linked article contains hate speech against transgender people. Ableist language.

A conservative online political magazine, FrontPage Magazine, posted an article about “transpecies” people, using them to criticize transgender people and their supporters.


Daniel Greenfield, “Forget transgender, get ready for transpecies.” 2013-03-02. FrontPage Magazine. http://frontpagemag.com/2013/dgreenfield/forget-transgender-get-ready-for-transpecies Printer friendly version: http://frontpagemag.com/2013/dgreenfield/forget-transgender-get-ready-for-transpecies/print
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for this article: surgical body modification, body issues, gender issues, mental health.

Here's a list of some new projects, articles, blogs, and translations from the past few months. (And, in some cases, some that I discovered only in the past few months, but which existed earlier than that. I assume they could use a little publicity.) I intend to post a summary of new otherkin creations of this kind each month from now on. The highlights of the projects listed here include: plans to bring recognition for otherkin by means of something resembling the OpenID system, a couple articles about surgical body modification for otherkin, and several articles exploring whether being otherkin should be diagnosed as a mental variation.


Tsu, a winged person, is collecting entries for the first issue of a new otherkin ’zine, The Forest Voice. Tsu told me via e-mail that when finished, this will be available in both PDF and print-on-demand. The theme for the issue is “walking man’s road: the difficulty of living as nonhuman in the human world.” Do you have any writing or art to offer?
Trigger warnings: homesickness, but it's not currently described in a vivid way.

Spectrum-X, a mage, wants to write a “directory on post-human/species modification,” an organized collection of links that tell how people can physically transform themselves by means of virtual reality, costumes, and surgery. Send ideas! There’s not much to see there yet, but the directory will be at this web-site.
Trigger warnings: body issues, surgery. Currently not graphic, but may become graphic later.


Feathertail’s otherkin FAQ,” by Feathertail, 2011-10-05,
Another introduction to otherkin, this one offering genuinely common questions with quite brief answers, well organized in sections: the basics; how to relate to otherkin; otherkin and religion; otherkin-ness and you.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

“‘Non-human,’” by an anonymous bird otherkin, 2011-10-30.
On problems with calling ourselves “non-human:” it defines us by what we are not; and it denies our humanity, which is not the best solution.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

The skeptical otherkin #1: ‘Otherkin are delusional,’” by Feathertail, 2011-10-17.
An otherkin considers various aspects of how one can argue that otherkin are delusional.
Trigger warnings: mental health issues, ableist language.

The skeptical otherkin #2: Relatively speaking,” by Feathertail, 2011-10-22.
Should otherkin be silenced so the concept won’t spread? Examining a slippery slope fallacy.
Trigger warnings: vividly describes religious intolerance.

Transspecies diagnosis,” by Rua, 2011-09-27.
Rua, a sidhe, argues that the DSM-IVTR criterion for gender identity disorder (transgender) matches otherkin so closely that one need only swap the word “gender” for “species.” Rua argues that if we could get transspecies recognized as a mental “disorder,” it could be a step toward getting otherkin accepted as something for real… and acknowledges that this would be sort of an ironic way of accomplishing this.
Trigger warnings: gender issues, body issues, mental health issues, ableist language.

Redefining p-shifting,” by Tsu, 2011-10-25.
Tsu argues that otherkin should consider surgery and virtual reality as a real way to attain physical transformation. Gives a few speculative examples.
Trigger warnings: body issues, surgery. Not graphic.

I love you all; how can I help,” by Feathertail, 2011-10-21.
Forming plans to create an OpenID system for non-human avatars in virtual and augmented reality, as a way for otherkin to achieve mainstream recognition.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

Here’s how I can help,” by Feathertail, 2011-10-25
Sequel to the above article.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

Deconstruction of an idea,” by Feathertail, 2011-11-09.
Further thoughts on how to create an OpenID system for non-human avatars. Considering the role of a personality quiz in constructing such a thing.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

More on tagging,” by Feathertail, 2011-11-12.
Further thoughts on how to create an OpenID system for non-human avatars.
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

“The otherkin (Die Anderen - Otherkin),” by Apu Kuntur (Stefan N. K.), no date.
A dragon/seraphim otherkin points out the connection between dragons and angels: seraphim, the Biblical “fiery flying serpents.”
Original German, and English translation.
Trigger warnings: vivid description of metaphysical experiences.

“I, an angel? Flying With Angel Wings - The Path to Myself (Ich, ein Engel? Auf Engelsflügeln zur Erkenntnis),” by Apu Kuntur (Stefan N. K.), no date.
More thoughts on the similarities of dragons and angelic seraphim.
Original German, and English translation.
Trigger warnings: vivid description of metaphysical experiences.


Pride – ett tal (Pride—a speech),” by Susitar, 2011-08-06.
(In Swedish.) Transcript of a speech about therianthropy, delivered at a Pride event by a wolf therian.
Trigger warnings: gender issues, body issues.

Ich bin ein Drache (Die Otherkin-FAQ) (I am a dragon [The otherkin FAQ]),” by Apu Kuntur (Stefan N. K.), no date.
(In German.) Based on, but not completely a translation of, Baxil’s Draconity FAQ in English.
Trigger warnings: ableism.


Laopa produced a Spanish translation of Wolf Van Zandt’s article "History of therianthropy and the therian community," which was originally in English.
Trigger warnings: mental health, metaphysics, brief description of some unhappy conflicts in the community.

Smokowatość FAQ (Draconity FAQ),” by Baxil, Polish translation by Nufuwyr.
About those who call themselves dragons.
Trigger warnings: ableism.


Kin Diet, by (author not stated?), first post 2011-10-02.
A collection of recipes selected to please various types of otherkin and therians.
Trigger warnings: this link sometimes describes and includes photographs of foods likely to make certain readers feel uncomfortable, including meat and blood.

- O. Scribner

May 2017

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