Reading Summaries 3 & 4

Tick, Suzanne. “His & Hers: Designing for a Post-Gender Society.” Metropolis Magazine. Mar. 2015. Web. 06 Feb. 2016.

Writer Suzanne Trick gives her realtors insight on how “gender-neutral design” is bound to become the next big thing in the workplace. We don’t initially pay attention that how offices are normally designed from men. We are so accustomed to the masculine theme of workplaces because of men’s power roles throughout history. The males’ needs were deemed as the most important, so the design of the workspaces had been catered to their needs. There is an apparent new wave of feminism. With help from Emma Watson and the LGBTQ community, there has become a more gradual acceptance of unisex spaces. “In the workplace, the barriers in hierarchies have started to come down as women have become more prominent.” Designers have started incorporating “gender sensitivity “into the spaces that they’re designing. Because of the growing trend of the obscuring of gender roles the accommodation for those in transgender communities and androgynists has become more necessary. In the workplace, bathrooms have become the main focus of this new trend that we’ve been discussing. Some coworkers aren’t comfortable with sharing a restroom with a transgender coworker. Now the concern becomes how can restrooms in the workplace accommodate all genders while respecting each individual’s needs.

Bazelon, Emily. “Making Bathrooms More ‘Accommodating’.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 21 Nov. 2015. Web. 06 Feb. 2016.

In this article Emily Bazelon points out that the word “accommodate” is often used when discussing bathroom access and can be both welcoming and hospitable, and compulsive. It has been easy for laws to be made to accommodate those with disabilities, but for those who identify as being transgender, this is a whole different story. Some may think that unisex, or “all-gender”, restrooms is the solution to this ongoing problem, but it is not. Some people whether they are male,female or transgender may be self-conscious about their bodies and prefer privacy rather than a shared space where one can become very vulnerable. Just like any human being, transgender men and women just want to be accepted by society, especially by their peers. Bazelon mentions a resource guy called “Peeing in Peace” that suggests proving you fit in with the gender whom you’re trying to use the bathroom with:
“Try pointing out your physical characteristics if they will help prove that you belong. For example, if you have breasts, try pointing them out to prove that you belong in the women’s room. If you have a deep voice, try speaking to show that you belong in the men’s room.”

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