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Transgender Warriors : Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman Paperback – June 30, 1997
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Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
You might think that being transsexual, I'd be pretty open-minded, but I must confess that this book really got me thinking about my own chosen gender and what exactly I want do with my transsexuality. Do I want to blend in with all the genetic XY guys after all, leaving no trace of my 'abnormal' gender? Do I really care if people know I don't have a penis? Must I be 100% male 100% of the time? And what is 'male' anyway?
Leslie presents a very personal history of transgenderism. Hir short autobiography echoes that of the many people who don't fit into the male OR female ONLY roles society has pushed us into over the centuries. Being transgendered, I could really emphasise with hir life story, and that of all the other trans* people who have a part in this book.
I'd recommend this book not only to other trans* people, but anyone who is interested in something else other than the traditional gender roles we are given. This is such a different prism to look at history and gender through. I want to major in History now. ::grin::
Leslie Feinberg not only provides comprehensive documentation of the roles of transgendered people in ancient societies, but also interprets these traditions and their decline by deconstructing our current views of gender as the result of patriarchy. Feinberg also weaves into the interpretation elements of socialist theory and class oppression.
These theoretical passages are interspersed with personal vignettes from the Feinberg's life which flesh out the explanation. Even if one doesn't fully buy into Feinberg's views, the book takes you on a fabulous journey and forces you to re-examine your beliefs about gender.
Although not scholarly,the book serves the important purpose of contributing one volume that consolidates documentation of many of the instances of transgenderism that previously were splintered throughout the literature.
The book is a quick read, which is both refreshing and disappointing. Perhaps in the near future Feinberg or others will branch off this pioneering work and continue to re-discover the robbed tradition of transgenderism throughout the world.
The first is Marxism. Given her working class background and where/when Feinberg grew up and lived prior to this book, it makes perfect sense this would be one of the lens she views history through. Marxism is still a valid if debated theory of historical interpretation but it is rarely sufficient to explain everything.
Feinberg's second lens is her own natural desire to find others like herself, others who do not neatly fit into the social defined gender categories. While this desire is natural it should never be can excuse to misinterpret evidence or to view other cultures with your own biases. But let's be honest, many well-trained historians do this.
Therefore I cannot fault a layperson too much for historical interpretations I may have issue with but instead I should look at where such information is gleaned. The fact is that the vast majority of Feinberg's statements are drawn from published students by scholars and wouldbe scholars.
What I like about this book is that she attempts to pull together a wide range of information and couple it with the political, social, and economic struggles of transgendered people today. The stories are powerful and pulled from a variety of times and places though I noticed a very large amount of Native American information.
This book came out 12 years ago so I would urge Feinberg to reflect on this and revise it to include more evidence and interpretations as well as an update on civil rights for those who cannot or refuse to live nicely in a gender box.
Hopefully others will pick up where Feinberg leaves off and apply other methodologies to uncover what has really been going on throughout human history where it comes to gender.
What the book lacks in traditional academic rigor it more than makes up for with its first-person self-consciousness, originality and plausibility in the interpretation of historical data. It is richly illustrated, literate, contemporary and very relevant to today's discourse.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book takes a great, simple approach to covering a quick over view of Transgender history. This is a must for anyone in LGBT+ activist circles, gender theory, and probably... Read morePublished 2 days ago by Ruth S.
My s/o had this book years ago, and made the mistake of loaning it to a friend. I was delighted to find it on Amazon. Very informative, and an easy read.Published 4 months ago by MJS
Ambitious and interesting. This book is not a historical text. It's an attempted overview of the ways in which predominant historical narratives can erase or play down instances... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Kindle Customer
A good read, though a little strident in places. Works well to put 1000 White Women in some anthropological context.Published 15 months ago by Joe Bell
A fascinating read!
"It had never occurred to me to search history for answers to my questions. I didn't do well in history classes in school. Read more
This is a good history of Transgender people going back into early recorded history., continuing with up to date comments as to current problems. Read morePublished on December 14, 2013 by Rosemarybooth
A well written history with self- story to keep you interested. Not a dry read at all. Keeps you wanting more.Published on December 9, 2012 by Claire M. Donaldson
Feinberg's tour de force uses modern day transgender activism as the motivation, but not the optic, through which to delve into "trans gender history. Read morePublished on August 31, 2011 by Moe
This book is excellent. Leslie Feinberg is a top-notch scholar, but zie writes in a way that is extremely engaging. Read morePublished on January 1, 2011 by Rowan