Phantom 1: Limb?
20th Century Interlude: A Self-made Man
In 1946 Dr Dillon published his findings.
Dillon embodied author/ity: a doctor and a writer
but was a man born female. He came from money,
helpful when the rest is stacked against you,
went to a women’s college then had his records changed
so he could enter med school as Michael.
Dillon marked off the observed sex of bodies
from the sex that was self-knowledge;
levered both away from sexual desire. A new
discussion opened (in some quarters). Westphal’s
inverts were gone, Freud’s repressions, gone.
Finally, a new term: transsexual. A crossing.
Cath Nichols was a queer journalist and radio broadcaster in the 90s and has also worked as a waitress, artist’s model, support worker, poetry events’ co-ordinator and a lecturer in Creative Writing. She has a PhD in Creative Writing from Lancaster University. Her publications are My Glamorous Assistant (Headland, 2007), Tales of Boy Nancy & Distance (erbacce, 2013), and the forthcoming This is Not a Stunt (2017, Valley Press). She lives near Liverpool (UK).