The author reflects here on a 2004 GLQ forum titled “Thinking Sex/Thinking Gender,” which focused on the relationships between gender, sex, and sexuality as intertwining and diverging categories of analysis. The essay contends specifically with the role of the category transgender in these relationships. By focusing on histories of funding for LGBTQ organizations, especially the philanthropic response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the author demonstrates how gender and sexuality remain importantly intertwined both theoretically and practically while trans and gender-nonconforming communities remain sidelined. Through examining this institutional history in conversation with theoretical debates about “transgender” as an object of inquiry in queer studies, the author argues for a discursively and material significant separation of “transgender” from the LGB(T)Q acronym, if only to examine the category for its full, often-precarious, and complicated realities.

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