Lost In Trans/Lation: Locating the Filipino Transgender Identity through the Oral Histories of It's Showtime's Miss Q and A Trans Women Contestants using a Multidimensional Encoding Analysis

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Leonardo, H.M. (2019). Lost In Trans/Lation: Locating the Filipino Transgender Identity through the Oral Histories of It’s Showtime’s Miss Q and A Trans Women Contestants using a Multidimensional Encoding Analysis. Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication.

This study aims to understand the transgender identity and locate its definition and representation in the Filipino psyche and culture. Specifically, I look into how the transgender women contestants of Miss Q and A, a segment in the noontime variety show It’s Showtime, encode their identities through the show.

Guided by Rogers’ Self-Concept theory and Locke’s Personal Identity theory, I traced the identity formation of our storytellers based on their oral histories. I also incorporated Crenshaw’s Intersectionality theory in understanding the transgender experience vis-à-vis the Filipino experience, and other prevalent identity markers. Using Schrøder’s multidimensional model, I analyzed the contestants’ encoding processes in the show. Furthermore, I evaluated their beliefs and actions employed in the show and how these relate to the existing hegemony that affects the transgender discourse.

Through this study, I weaved the oral histories of our storytellers and came up with a synthesis of who and what a Filipino transgender is as encoded by these select transgender women contestants of Miss Q and A and as mediated by the segment. In doing this study, I want to communicate the unspoken, unheard, and unseen stories and struggles of transgender people. I believe in the significance of this work in exposing the role of television in identity formation and SOGIE education.

Keywords: identity, transgender, LGBTQ+, Miss Q and A, multidimensional model, encoding, intersectionality, oral history

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