“Harry Potter” author Joanne Rowling, 54, who is professionally known as J.K. Rowling, is being accused of transphobia yet again. On June 7, 2020, she took to social media to question the headline of an article about people who menstruate.
The tweet received a slew of criticisms and many critics, including “Harry Potter” fans, labelled her as a transphobe and a trans exclusive radical feminist (TERF). Still, she stood her ground by defending her concept of sex while claiming that she supports transgender people.
Born in Yate, Gloucestershire, England in 1965, Rowling is the daughter of Rolls-Royce aircraft engineer Peter James Rowling and science technician Anne Volant Rowling. Before “Harry Potter” became famous, J.K. was told by her publishers to use two initials rather than her full name because the target audience of young boys might not want to read a book written by a woman.
The seven series of “Harry Potter” were published between 1997 and 2007. In 2001, using the pen name of the fictitious author Newt Scamander, J.K. published “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” a guide book about the magical creatures in the “Harry Potter” universe.
Transphobes fear or hate transgender people. The former bully, exclude or act unfairly to those they think do not match the ideas they have about sex and gender, insist that other people live up to these ideas and punish those who do not, J Wallace Skelton explained in the short book “Transphobia: Deal with It and Be a Gender Transcender .”
In September 2018, researcher Maya Forstater took to Twitter to assert that transgender women cannot change their biological sex. In March 2019, her contract as a tax expert at the Centre for Global Development (CGD), an international think tank based in Washington, United States and London, England, was not renewed.
Forstater was a visiting fellow at the CGD, which campaigns against poverty and inequality. She filed an employment discrimination complaint before the Employment Tribunals in London but lost the case.
On December 19, 2019, J.K. took to Twitter to defend Forstater. Many “Harry Potter” fans were disappointed.
People who menstruate
Saying that menstruation is experienced by women is incorrect since there are people born female who do not menstruate. Also, there are people who experience it but do not identify themselves as women, namely trans men, nonbinary and genderqueer people.
“Lately, my period affects me quite a lot,” nonbinary, trans masculine, pansexual David Barrett of Akron, Ohio, United States told Jen Bell of Hello Clue in 2019. “I have extra dysphoria then because I feel required to use the women’s restroom even though I want to use the men’s. I don’t really have an outlet for my dysphoria so it ends up being internalized.”
More than 500 million women around the world do not have what they need to manage their menstruation, according to Laura Amaya, Jaclyn Marcatili and Neeraja Bhavaraju, the authors of “Advancing Gender Equity by Improving Menstrual Health,” which was published on FSG. In 2020, there is much interest and potential for improved investment to address the menstrual health and hygiene needs of girls, women and all people who menstruate, Marni Sommer, Virginia Kamowa and Therese Mahon wrote in the Devex article, which the “Harry Potter” author recently tweeted about.