Conversational Storytelling in Community Context: Examining Talk on Transgender Radio

Author: Kate Ames, Central Queensland University, Australia
Published: July 31, 2017

Citation: Ames, K. (2017). Conversational Storytelling in Community Context: Examining Talk on Transgender Radio. IAFOR Journal of Media, Communication & Film, 4(1).


This paper considers the role of co-participatory storytelling within the framework of community radio, radio talk and transgender media. It considers this by examining storytelling by participants on an Australian radio program, TRANS*Positions, which is broadcast on JOY FM, a successful and well-known Australian community radio station. The paper reveals the ways co-participatory conversational storytelling, a dominant form of talk on this program designed for a transgender audience, informs listeners and fosters a sense of community. It analyses the very localised form of interactions between hosts, guests, and callers and reveals the way in which participants make relevant topics that are considered potentially controversial if spoken by a non-transgender audience. The interactions demonstrate the way in which co-participants in localised talk for an overhearing audience represent “ourselves to ourselves”. While it is an Australian case-study, there are implications more broadly for broadcasters wishing to create space for very localised, community-oriented talk.


transgender media, broadcast talk, community radio, storytelling, community