This essay responds to Slavoj Žižek's recent criticism of trans activism by arguing for an understanding of gendered recognition within the symbolic-social realm that goes beyond acknowledgment and acceptance of diverse gender identities without requiring the presumption of any biological or physical essence of gender. This model is defended through a review of social constructionist and psychoanalytic models of perception and gender attribution, and illustrated through examples drawn from ChaosLife and Eve's Apple—two Web comics by and about transgender people.

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