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Transgender character in English drama “Sonata” to enhance visibility of the marginalised, says Actress-filmmaker Aparna Sen

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Kolkata, April 9, 2017: Actress-filmmaker Aparna Sen who helms and stars in the forthcoming film “Sonata” said she included a transgender character in the English drama to enhance visibility of the marginalised.

“I felt, apart from friendship, the film was exploring many aspects of the ‘feminine’. I wanted to broaden that spectrum, include a person from a different economic strata and include a transgender female because transgenders are becoming a reality,” she said here at a discussion on ‘Text in Context’.

“Sonata” is an adaption of the eponymous play by playwright Mahesh Elkunchwar. It will hit the screens on April 21.

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The English drama is a psychological exploration of three unmarried women facing a mid-life crisis. It stars Lilette Dubey, Sen and Shabana Azmi.

Sen said the marginalised sections of society are “completely invisible”.

“There was a time when I started including a challenged person in almost all my films because of only one reason… because we have made them completely invisible and people have had no exposure to them. So I don’t want to make them invisible. Let there be this transgender girl who is a friend of ours. So that’s the reason I included a transgender character,” she added. (IANS)

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Eating disorder can be treated in transgenders

Hormone treatment can turn down dissatisfaction that leads to eating disorders

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Study finds hormone treatment can cure eating disorders in transgenders. Wikimedia commons
Study finds hormone treatment can cure eating disorders in transgenders. Wikimedia commons
  • Western society’s obsession with idealized body shapes are linked to eating disorders.
  • Transgenders live in a dissatisfaction related to their body shape and weight.
  • Hormone therapy is a way of countering this situation.

A study finds, hormone therapy can help in reducing the symptoms of eating disorders such as anorexia and binge-eating among transgenders.

Western society’s obsession with an idealized image of beauty fueled a deep-seated unhappiness within people regarding their body. This directly links to eating disorders like self-induced vomiting and misuse of diet pills.

Transgenders live with a dissatisfaction related to their body shape and weight, which makes them vulnerable to developing eating disorders.

Western obsession of 'perfect' body shapes incites dissatisfaction. Wikimedia commons
The western obsession with ‘perfect’ body shapes incites dissatisfaction. Wikimedia Commons

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Researchers found that hormone treatment can improve this situation, tone down levels of perfectionism and anxiety. It can boost self-esteem and alleviate eating disorder symptoms.

“Young transgender people may restrict their food as a way to control their puberty, stop their period or reduce the development of breasts. Hormone treatment might be able to improve eating disorder symptoms in this population,” said Jon Arcelus, Professor at the University of Nottingham in the UK.

The team surveyed more than 560 transgenders, over the age of 17 years, 139 of which began the hormone treatment.

Transgenders have high-tendency of developing eating disorders. Wikimedia commons
Transgenders have high-tendency of developing eating disorders. Wikimedia commons

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The results showed that those not taking the hormone treatment were significantly more likely to report their need to be thin and be dissatisfied with their physique which further affected personal relationships and depression and anxiety.

Thus, eating disorder professionals should consider the gender identity of the person when assessing a person with symptoms of an eating disorder, the study suggested.

The study was published in journal European Eating Disorders Review. (IANS)