Mirza-Hélène Deneuve ("Julles")Age 26 (born 7 Oct 1995)
28 Mar 2022
Le Havre, Seine-Maritime (France)
Mirza was the founder of Transgrrrls and a leader in advocating for the rights and lives of trans women in France.
On March 28, Mirza-Hélène Deneuve killed herself. Many tributes have already been written and are circulating on social networks; however, it seems important to us, current or historical members of Transgrrrls, to dedicate a new one to her.
It was Mirza who created the Transgrrrls blog and the collective of the same name in the summer of 2018. Noting that there were few resources in French at the time about political issues relating to transfemininities, she had the ambition to produce these, whether by translating texts from others or by writing their own. So she set to work over the next two years, and to sign more than half of the blog articles of her various pseudonyms: Sister Mirza-Hélène, Mirza D., Ernest, Mahleneriez, Jules.
Creator and main contributor to the blog, present in the demonstrations as well as on all the zine stands of the events to which we were invited, Mirza was Transgrrrls. With her gone, definitely, it's a blog page that turns.
Beyond the blog, these are words, ideas, radical energies that continue to cross transfeminist, materialist and transpédégouine circles today. As the vials of liquid estradiol circulate more and more, Kissing the Trans Girls is enthusiastically shared in squats as well as in family planning centers and LGBTI centres; some protest signs feature Andrea Dworkin. Soon, we will read Minnie Bruce Pratt in French.
In the meantime, let's read together this poem by Kai Cheng Thom that Mirza had translated in 2020 and which remains sadly relevant:
you know, fem,
sometimes I'm so mad at you for being dead,
I could curse you / I could whine,
I could write your name on my arms, with fire and blades,
if it meant you would come back to keep me from hurting myself
(is it possible that the poetry of self-harm, self-effacement, sacrifice and martyrdom
is the only language we really shared)
I know it's selfish / I don't care / did you think of me?
and to the world of other trans girls that you left in the countryside
when you joined
The Eternal Chorus of Sad Trans Girls in Heaven? you piss off,
I needed you here, your feet in the dust
with us / I needed your breath, to remember how much / I needed your rage your art your ecstasy your violent wisdom
I needed your survival to ensure mine,
I needed a flesh and blood sister, someone who would paint my nails and yell at me
not a Dead Spiritual Ancestor to poetize /
fuck poetry, if it doesn't keep us alive,
fuck art and stories, if
it's all just an echo chamber reminding us all the time
that we are going to die,
I'm tired of the language of mourning
and I'm tired of being angry,
it's like all i can do is share these feelings & get likes,
I can talk and talk and all these words can't save anyone,
someone/anyone sing me a song of hope and life
that someone / anyone,
teaches me the art of resurrection,
i keep meeting women only after they die,
like a fairy tale character following a trail made of
flesh and bone
someone save me from (your)/our heritage, from this paved road
glitter and death,
please someone save me
like i didn't save you
By all accounts Mirza left behind huge legacy in France and she is sorely missed. The following tribute to her was received by email:
What follows is the note left by her friends over at trrransgrrrls.wordpress.com (The website and organisation she created), translated by me (Magimilienne)
Original link (in French): https://trrransgrrrls.wordpress.com/2022/04/15/pour-mirza/
‘On March 28th, Mirza-Hélène Deneuve took her own life.
Lots of tribute posts have already been made on social media; but it still felt important to us, actual or past members of Transgrrrls, that we dedicated her one.
Mirza indeed founded the Transgrrrls blog and association in the summer of 2018. Noticing there were so few French resources related to political challenges related to transness (specifically trans women), she deeply wanted to create these same resources, either by translating already existing articles or writing her own. Following this, she worked relentlessly during the following two years, and she signed over half the blog’s articles under her different pseudonyms: Sœur Mirza-Hélène, Mirza D., Ernest, Mahleneriez and Julles.
Being the main creator and contributor, she attended many demonstrations and was on the zine stands in every event where we were invited. Mirza was Transgrrrls. Now, with her being now gone forever, a page is turned for us.
But it all goes much further than just the blog. It’s all about the words, the ideas, the radical energies that keep on influencing the transfem, materialist and queer environments. As the liquid estrogen flasks circulate more and more, ‘Baiser des meufs trans’ is still vividly shared, as well in the squats as in the Planned Parenthood clinics and LGBTI+ centres; some demonstration signs even reference Andrea Dworkin. Soon we’ll even read Minnie Bruce Pratt in French.’
Here are several links to tributes made to Mirza (including my own)
https://twitter.com/SEredhel/status/1509546755251134469 (One of Mirza’s best firends. She also posted, under this thread, a link to read each and every post Mirza wrote/translated)
https://twitter.com/yeezlouise/status/1509533253421703169 (The creator of XY Media, one of the most famous French media for trans people. She was the one who informed us of Mirza’s passing)
https://twitter.com/editionsblast/status/1509836683646230528 (Tribute made by the Blast editions, with whom Mirza worked on publishing a book)
https://twitter.com/ChuteNations/status/1509564559924867085 (Another tribute thread, more personal)
Hommage à Mirza Deneuve ???????? pic.twitter.com/PWSHwa0wpN— Maximax (@Magimilienne) May 14, 2022