Hil Malatino

After Negativity? On Whiteness and Trans Healing

Aula Crociera 113, Università degli Studi di Milano

Via Festa del Perdono 7

Gianmarco Donaggio, still da  Manifestarsi (2021)


This talk explores how trans experiments with psychedelics, New Age spirituality, and the utopian future visions these practices so often inform are underwritten by a conflation of trans embodiment with forms of plasticity and mobility that are deeply informed by whiteness, steeped in racial privilege and cultural appropriation, and rooted in prevailing Eurocentric biomedical discourse on trans embodiment. Demonstrating that individualist neoliberal logics conspire with racial capitalism even in those spaces where subjects are seeking out alternative ways of being, it explores how trans strategies for de-individuation and cultivating inter-connectedness remain stubbornly limited by mechanisms of racial exclusion and the concomitant exoticization and appropriation of non-Western spiritual practice.


Hil Malatino is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and a research associate in the Rock Ethics Institute. He holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy and a graduate certificate in Feminist Theory from Binghamton University. Prior to coming to Penn State, Dr. Malatino was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Gender Studies at Indiana University and Assistant Director and Lecturer in Women’s Studies at East Tennessee State University.