Yangssaekshi (Western bride), Yanggongju (Western princess), and Yangggalbo (Western whore), also translated as “Camptown sex worker,” are the terms for South Korean women who provided sexual and service labor to the US soldiers during and after the Korean War. Yet buried here is a trans sex worker's history. What did it take for the contemporary South Korean trans community and trans studies globally to become detached from Camptown sex workers' knowledge and sociality? How has a certain universalized understanding of transness in trans studies alienated scholarship from Camptown sex workers' knowledge and blocked us South Koreans from positioning ourselves in the conventional trans genealogy? How has our omission preconditioned trans studies? Guided by decolonial trans scholarship, this essay thinks of the temporal narrativization of trans discourse, one that includes critical trans studies, that has formulated its own discursive territory through trans as a geopolitical marker of modernity.

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