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The Game of Labor

The Game of Labor


In “Gender Labor: Transmen, Femmes, and the Collective Work of Transgression,” Jane Ward develops the theory of “gender labor” through the example of femme/transmasculine relationships. Gender labor refers to the affective, physical, and sexual labors we do to support the genders of those around us. Gender, Ward says, doesn’t simply exist, but is given and received via labored acts.


In The Game of Labor, players explore how gender is given, received, and constructed performatively in this adapted version of The Game of Life. Players assemble both their gender and that of their partner by gathering cards that represent gendered situations, such as “Your partner refuses to ‘bottom’ during sex, because they would ‘be the girl’” (Ward).

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