• Jill Soloway at Hollywood Athletic Club on April 22, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (FilmMagic / Getty Images)Source: FilmMagic / Getty Images
“I’m happy to speak on behalf of women and on behalf of feminism. But I notice when people see me as non-binary, I get treated more as a human being."
By
Michaela Morgan

22 May 2017 - 11:53 AM  UPDATED 22 May 2017 - 11:53 AM

Writer and director Jill Soloway has spoken about identifying as non-binary and the future of gender norms in an interview with the Guardian.

The creator of Transparent and I Love Dick says that they increasingly “feel strange” when people gender them as female.

“And if someone is like, ‘You look so pretty’ or ‘beautiful’, I feel offended,” says Soloway.

“It’s like I’m succeeding at something feminine when I’m not trying, and that feels like a strange insult.

“I’m changing every day, so every six months I’m like: ‘None of this stuff makes sense any more’.”

Soloway says that they change their wardrobe every six months and have gotten rid of “every even slightly feminine shoe”.

“There’s a feeling of being grown up, and moving through the world and feeling like I’m the subject instead of the object and that doesn’t really work for me if I’m feeling feminine.

“I think it’s more about the binary, the masculine and feminine."

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Soloway added that: “There will always be incredibly masculine people and completely feminine people, but that has nothing to do with people’s bodies, whether they have a penis or vagina.

“And besides those two poles there’s also a place in the middle, the non-binariness, the people who don’t register as one or the other.

“I’m happy to speak on behalf of women and on behalf of feminism.

But I notice when people see me as non-binary, I get treated more as a human being,” says Soloway. 

The Emmy winner says that the definition of ‘woman’ “shouldn’t mean a particular thing, that it can mean anything”.

“But the words man and woman, male and female, they describe who we used to be.

“You know, there are a lot of trans men who menstruate and there are a lot of trans women who get offended if the feminist movement is about vagina hats.

“[The binary] is not going to stand in the future.”

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Soloway added that they identify as trans, but has deliberately held off on a public announcement. 

“I identify as trans, which means that I am not seeking to synthesise my appearance with the label assigned to me at birth and instead am opting to live in a space where a label other than male or female is used to define me,” they said.

“Under the transbrella, there are so many identities. I haven’t made the big ‘I’m trans’ announcement because the politics in the community are so intense.

“It’s more like I had the realisation that the word cis didn’t work for me, so first there was the ‘not-cis’ revelation, which linguistically means the same thing as trans.

“As I said, most people who play with gender norms like butch women don’t identify as trans so it’s a little wobbly.

“I think in a year or two, more people will,” says Soloway.