Curiosity & the Digital Transgender Archive, with K.J. Rawson

“You can definitely see traces of different kinds of curiosity throughout the historical record, and the ways that throughout history people are trying to grapple with gender transgression and understand what is happening. Certainly there are approaches that are much more objectifying, much more negative, are interested in a kind of salacious story — but then there are many others that are trying to get a different perspective, that are just trying to understand.” ~ K.J. Rawson

Philosophy graduate student Matt Ferguson takes the helm this week for an exploration of epistemic injustice in marginalized communities, where a lack of knowledge about one’s own history has real consequences. Matt talks with K.J. Rawson, project director for the Digital Transgender Archive (DTA), in this conversation about DTA and exploration of how curiosity and archives might help address such injustice.

Listen to Choose to be Curious #120: Curiosity & the Digital Transgender Archive, with K.J. Rawson.

This is the first in what I hope will be a series of shows guest-hosted by graduate and undergraduate students who were enrolled in the fall 2019 class Topics in Philosophy at American University.

As part of their final papers, students conceived and pitched potential episodes and interviews for Choose to be Curious. It was a privilege and a thrill to listen to their presentations and hear their ideas.

Originally, I committed to produce just one show, but I was so impressed with the students’ work, that I extended the offer to multiple students. Matt is the first across the finish line, a testament to his determination, even in the face of the pandemic.

Check out the Digital Transgender Archive.


When he’s not running the DTA, K.J. Rawson is a professor at College of the Holy Cross, with interests in Composition and Rhetoric, Rhetorical History, Archives, LGBT Studies and Digital Media.

Our theme music is by Sean Balick.

You can subscribe to Choose to be Curious on Apple Podcasts/ iTunes and Stitcher.

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