PRINT April 1995


Kate Bornstein's Gender Outlaw

WHEN ROUTLEDGE ASKED me to provide a comment for the back cover of Gender Outlaw they neglected to tell me who the other commentators were. I stupidly assumed that they saw the book as cultural theory and so provided them with a happy but suitably high-theoretical quote. What did I know? My quote, in all its academic stuffiness, would have looked weird indeed next to Annie Sprinkle’s, which they did use and which, thank Ghu, used “orgasm” twice in the same paragraph.

Why was I so happy? Merely because we are privileged to witness a rare watershed, the first mainstream book by a transgendered person to tackle issues of performance, gender, and sexuality from a specifically transgendered positionality. As such, it has the potential to explode many of the tired stereotypes of transgender. Its promise is its ability to reach beyond preaching to the already converted and to the gender bigots

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