TERF Wars: an introduction

Ruth Pearce, Sonja Erikainen, Ben Vincent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)


In the academic year of 2017–18, one of the editors of this volume convened a course on gender and sexuality at a UK university. The course elicited overwhelmingly positive feedback from students. However, following examinations an invigilator expressed concern, communicated via management, with the language some students used in their answers. Specifically, the invigilator took issue with students employing the acronym ‘TERF’ (Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist) to criticise a range of ideological positions, because they considered the acronym a misogynist slur. The course convenor’s line manager subsequently asked whether the term was used within teaching materials.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)677-698
Number of pages22
JournalThe Social Review Monographs
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2020


  • Exclusionary politics
  • Feminism
  • gender ideology
  • post-truth
  • trans feminism


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