Meet the ‘Testo Junkie’ Who Hacks Her Gender with Testosterone 
In 2008, Beatriz Preciado published Testo Junkie, an unclassifiable essay that turned the academic world upside down and placed her as an international reference on what happens when you take testosterone outside a medical protocol or even outside a gender re-assignment protocol. She tests this thesis by using self-managed testosterone intake as a tool of “gender-hacking”—breaking into the gender codes that prescribe our social identities.
Testo Junkie was recently published in the US, which presented me with the perfect excuse to get in touch. Although Beatriz agreed to talk to me about her thesis, she’s not very fond of the press. As we head to a café she tell me that “VICE is the best of the worst.” I call her Beatriz and she corrects me: I should call her Beto. She smells like man and flowers—a gardenia in a suit.
VICE: Hi, Beto, thank you for agreeing to this interview. It’s an honour. Can you talk to me about your idea of using the body as an archive in Testo Junkie?Beatriz Preciado: Thinking that the body ends where the skin does is ridiculous, and yet that’s how we think. Instead of talking about the “body,” I use the term “body archive.” I see the body as a cultural and political archive, with images, narratives and practices stored in it. Our body is small but the wider somatic apparatus is gigantic.
What happens when testosterone comes into play?It is about your willingness to make your body a place of commitment. How you are perceived collectively, how you are built collectively—because, even if you independently decide to take testosterone, it’s never a completely individual act. There is a network involved; someone is going to smuggle it and you have to do it knowing that there will be side effects—that is, you will be viewed differently by society.
Obviously, when you take testosterone there are molecular changes taking place in your body, but above all there is a shift in your social position. So testosterone is to do with the management of your own body, but it goes way beyond that.
Continue

Meet the ‘Testo Junkie’ Who Hacks Her Gender with Testosterone 

In 2008, Beatriz Preciado published Testo Junkie, an unclassifiable essay that turned the academic world upside down and placed her as an international reference on what happens when you take testosterone outside a medical protocol or even outside a gender re-assignment protocol. She tests this thesis by using self-managed testosterone intake as a tool of “gender-hacking”—breaking into the gender codes that prescribe our social identities.

Testo Junkie was recently published in the US, which presented me with the perfect excuse to get in touch. Although Beatriz agreed to talk to me about her thesis, she’s not very fond of the press. As we head to a café she tell me that “VICE is the best of the worst.” I call her Beatriz and she corrects me: I should call her Beto. She smells like man and flowers—a gardenia in a suit.

VICE: Hi, Beto, thank you for agreeing to this interview. It’s an honour. Can you talk to me about your idea of using the body as an archive in Testo Junkie?
Beatriz Preciado: Thinking that the body ends where the skin does is ridiculous, and yet that’s how we think. Instead of talking about the “body,” I use the term “body archive.” I see the body as a cultural and political archive, with images, narratives and practices stored in it. Our body is small but the wider somatic apparatus is gigantic.

What happens when testosterone comes into play?
It is about your willingness to make your body a place of commitment. How you are perceived collectively, how you are built collectively—because, even if you independently decide to take testosterone, it’s never a completely individual act. There is a network involved; someone is going to smuggle it and you have to do it knowing that there will be side effects—that is, you will be viewed differently by society.

Obviously, when you take testosterone there are molecular changes taking place in your body, but above all there is a shift in your social position. So testosterone is to do with the management of your own body, but it goes way beyond that.

Continue

Back when I was 15, like every other boy of the same age since the day those gross little fish crawled out the sea and grew legs, I was obsessed with anything relating to girls, their vaginas and their boobs. I was a virgin with a fast internet connection and a lust that forced me to keep multiple packets of tissues on me at all times. The girls in my school were pretty hot, which made matters worse, but lucky for my friends and I, they were also mostly very easy.
There was one particular girl in geography class who took my eye. We were allowed to choose our own seats in class and I always made sure we sat together. She was extremely flirty—as in, taking my hand and placing it on her crotch in the middle of class flirty. So I obviously loved sitting next to her and spurring out an average of eight gallons of pre-cum every single time. Anyway, we started to get more adventurous. I’d cover my crotch with a jumper, she’d play around; she’d drop a pencil on the floor, I’d have a grope when she was crawling around under me, and we’d basically jam in as much restricted depravity as was possible without giving ourselves away.
One hazy summer afternoon, while the teacher was drawling on about coastal erosion or something equally dull, she grabbed my hand and slipped it up her skirt. The initial shock of that got me past the unusually wet feel, until my brain caught up with my fingers and I pulled my hand away. Either this girl had come on as soon as she put my hand in, or she just had a thing about bleeding on people, but whatever the reason, I was disgusted and angry. I rose my arms rapidly, sending a stream of period blood up the face of the guy next to me and all over a graph about fault lines.
Sitting in the principal’s office with the girl, my parents, and her parents was single-handedly the worst moment of my young life so far.
More stories about being a school kid in Britain

Back when I was 15, like every other boy of the same age since the day those gross little fish crawled out the sea and grew legs, I was obsessed with anything relating to girls, their vaginas and their boobs. I was a virgin with a fast internet connection and a lust that forced me to keep multiple packets of tissues on me at all times. The girls in my school were pretty hot, which made matters worse, but lucky for my friends and I, they were also mostly very easy.

There was one particular girl in geography class who took my eye. We were allowed to choose our own seats in class and I always made sure we sat together. She was extremely flirty—as in, taking my hand and placing it on her crotch in the middle of class flirty. So I obviously loved sitting next to her and spurring out an average of eight gallons of pre-cum every single time. Anyway, we started to get more adventurous. I’d cover my crotch with a jumper, she’d play around; she’d drop a pencil on the floor, I’d have a grope when she was crawling around under me, and we’d basically jam in as much restricted depravity as was possible without giving ourselves away.

One hazy summer afternoon, while the teacher was drawling on about coastal erosion or something equally dull, she grabbed my hand and slipped it up her skirt. The initial shock of that got me past the unusually wet feel, until my brain caught up with my fingers and I pulled my hand away. Either this girl had come on as soon as she put my hand in, or she just had a thing about bleeding on people, but whatever the reason, I was disgusted and angry. I rose my arms rapidly, sending a stream of period blood up the face of the guy next to me and all over a graph about fault lines.

Sitting in the principal’s office with the girl, my parents, and her parents was single-handedly the worst moment of my young life so far.

More stories about being a school kid in Britain