The UK Government recently funded $54,000 to a toilet research that aimed to explore and disrupt perceived notions of ‘access’ and ‘identity’ and to find ways of articulating the idea that ‘peeing is political.’
The research points out the traditional thinking behind the toilet establishments. “Thinking around toilets, and their function as material as well as socio-cultural environments, presents an opportunity to think in multi-faceted ways about forms of identity. Toilets often present a stark visual and material enactment of a gender binary in ways that can be problematic for trans, genderqueer, or non-binary people who do not identify with the gender they were assigned at birth. Conversely, it is often the ‘accessible’ (disabled) toilet that provides a gender-neutral space. For some disabled people, this can serve as an example, reflected in the built environment, of the oppressive assumption that they are genderless and asexual.”
While using arts- and practice-based approaches to experiment with ‘toilet talk’ as a method of investigating issues of ‘access’ and ‘identity’ in relation to gender and disability, the research and activities focus around gender and disability, seeking to consider additional intersections of identity including race, ethnicity, age, religion and faith.