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  By Anne Vitale Ph.D. Editor -- Mar 20, 2022

Notes on Gender Role Transition
Anne Vitale Ph.D. Editor


Recommended Reading List by Date Published
Updated 2/15/2004

Thanks to Ms. Ally Adamo for the fine work she did to compile this list for us.

2004 Printings

She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders. Boylan, J. F. Broadway; (August 10, 2004)
Boylan, English professor and author of the critically acclaimed novels The Constellations (1994), The Planets (1991), and Getting In (1998), began life as a male named James Boylan. In this autobiography, she details her lifelong struggle with her burgeoning femaleness and the path she followed to become a female, both physically and mentally. For 40 years, the author lived as a man, seemingly happy and even marrying a woman and fathering two children. At a certain point, though, she realized...

My Husband Betty: Love, Sex and Life with a Cross-Dresser. Boyd, H. Thunder's Mouth Press; (January 2004)
Author Helen Boyd is a happily married woman whose husband enjoys sharing her wardrobe—and she has written the first book on transgendered men to focus on their relationships and their female partners. Traditionally known as cross-dressers, transvestites, or drag queens, men like Helen’s husband are diverse and don’t always conform to stereotype. Many of the older transvestites are socially conservative, deeply closeted, and devout churchgoers. Helen addresses every imaginable question concerning the reasons for behavior that still baffles not only "mental health professionals" but the practitioners themselves; the taxonomy of the transgendered and the distinct but overlapping societies of each group; coming out; bisexuality; and homophobia. The book features interviews with some very interesting people, all of whom struggle and love: dominatrix and her cross-dressing husband; a crossdressing Reiki master and his son; a woman who after dating one cross-dresser wanted to date others and met—and fell in love with—a transsexual instead; a woman whose husband promised her he was only a cross-dresser and later realized that he was transsexual. This is a book about relationships that will engage the reader, and Helen’s narrative is a powerful lens with which to examine our own notions of gender and equality.

2003 Printings

Mystic Rose: A Study of Primitive Marriage and of Primitive Thought in its Bearing on Marriage. Crawly, E. Kessinger Publishing Company; (January 2003)
Contents: Taboo Imposed; Sexual Taboo; Human Relations; Commensal Relations; Sexual Relations; Breaking of Taboo; Theory of Union; Confirmation and Engagement; Marriage and its Ceremonies; Husband, Wife and Mother-in-Law; Parents and Child; Marriage System.

Sex Changes: The Politics of Transgenderism. Califia, Patrick. Cleis Press; 2nd edition (September 2003)
Writing about both male-to-female and female-to-male transsexuals, Califia examines the lives of early transgender pioneers like Christine Jorgenson and Mark Rees, partners of transgendered people, and contemporary transgender activists. This updated edition is a meticulously researched history by one of America's most provocative thinkers.

True Selves: Understanding Transsexualism for Families, Friends, Coworkers and Helping Professionals. Brown, M., Rounsley, C., Jossey-Bass; Reprint edition (March 7, 2003)
Combines authoritative information and humanitarian insight into the transsexual experience Filled with wisdom and understanding, this groundbreaking book paints a vivid portrait of conflicts transsexuals face on a daily basis--and the courage they must summon as they struggle to reveal their true being to themselves and others. True Selves offers valuable guidance for those who are struggling to understand these people and their situations.
Using real life stories, actual letters, and other compelling examples, the authors give a clear understanding of what it means to be transsexual. They also give other useful advice, including how to deal compassionately with these commonly misunderstood individuals--by keeping an open heart, communicating fears, pain and support, respecting choices.

Wrapped in Blue: A Journey of Discovery. Rose, D. Living Legacy Press; (May 2003)
Wrapped In Blue is Donna Rose's deeply personal memoir of self-discovery. Hers is a coming-of-age story with an unusual twist. By exploring the thoughts and emotions of an every-day person facing a unique midlife dilemma, Donna forces herself to question even the most basic aspects of her life. This is the story of her courageous and difficult journey across the gender line in hopes of finding true peace and contentment.

2002 Printings

Genderqueer: Voices from Beyond the Sexual Binary. Nestle, J., Wilchins, R., Howell, C., Editors. Alyson Pubns; (August 2002)
Perhaps more than any other issue, gender identity has galvanized the queer community in recent years. The questions go beyond the nature of male/female to a yet-to-be-traversed region that lies somewhere between and beyond biologically determined gender. In this groundbreaking anthology, three experts in gender studies and politics navigate around rigid, societally imposed concepts of two genders to discover and illuminate the limitless possibilities of identity. Thirty first-person accounts of gender construction, exploration, and questioning provide a groundwork for cultural discussion, political action, and even greater possibilities of autonomous gender choices. Noted scholar Joan Nestle is joined by internationally prominent gender warrior Riki Wilchins and historian Clare Howell to provide a societal, cultural, and political exploration of gender identity.

Hidden in Plain Sight. Townsend, L. Writers Club Press; (August 12, 2002)
Leslie lives life to the fullest. She is loved and respected by her family and friends. Throughout her life, she has achieved many goals including working as a model, getting married and entertaining audiences as a stand-up comedienne. However, all the while, Leslie has been hiding a secret about her past. Always fearful of being rejected and ostracized if the truth came to light, Leslie kept her past just that, the past.
But secrets weigh heavy on her mind and after years of lies and covering her tracks through career pursuits and relationships, she has decided to tell the truth about her transsexual history and the struggle to live with the legacy of her decision.
This story follows the journey of a child in confusion, an adolescent in turmoil and a young adult, who embarks on a quest for wholeness. It is a story of breaking gender barriers and of crossing the chasm from male to female.

How Sex Changed: A History of Transsexuality in the United States. Meyerowitz, Joanne. Harvard Univ Pr; (2002)
Christine Jorgenson wasn't the first person to undergo sex-change surgery, but her media-savvy personality and glamorous looks made her a household name in the 1950s. Historian Meyerowitz chronicles the saga of transsexuals themselves, including their struggles for access to sex transformation and their continued problems with discrimination both from the conservative Right and from gays and feminists who saw them as "infiltrators." She also shows how the phenomenon of transsexuality led...

2001 Printings

Constructing Gendered Bodies (Explorations in Sociology). Milburn, K.B., McKie, L., Editors. Palgrave Macmillan; (June 2001)
Interest in sociological study of the body, theoretically and empirically, has increased dramatically in the 1990s. This book builds on this work by bringing together research which examines the social and cultural processes involved in the construction of gendered bodies and sexual practices. Contributors explore these issues in a variety of settings ranging from the workplace and leisure industry to social arenas of moral and medical regulation.

The Transgender Debate. Whittle, Stephen. Garnet Pub Ltd; (May 1, 2001)
Transgender has become a cultural obsession. From the high camp of Rue Paul to the working class transsexual icon, Hayley of Coronation Street, it pervades our lives. Yet for many it remains a freakish interest on the sidelines. For transsexual and transgender people, though, it is a reality bound up in complexities, legal contradictions, family discord, and a desperate need to explain what it means to be a man or a woman, or neither, or both.
Addressing the historical, social, legal and medical issues surrounding this new community, this book throws a light onto the complex issues, clarifying them in a way that all those who think they know what they mean, will be called to question the certainties that gender roles are no longer about.

2000 Printings

Changing Ones: Third and Fourth Genders in Native North America. Roscoe, W. St. Martin's Press; (June 2000)
The term 'berdache' is a little-known, rarely discussed reference to Native American individuals who embodied both genders - what some might classify as 'the third sex.' In Changing Ones, William Roscoe explores the world of berdaches, revealing meaningful differences between Native American culture and contemporary North American culture. Roscoe reveals that rather than being ostracized or forced into obscurity, berdaches were embraced by some 150 tribes, serving as artists, medicine people, religious experts, and tribal leaders. Changing Ones combines the fields of anthropology, sociology, queer theory, gay and lesbian studies, and gender studies to challenge conventional schools of thought and to expand every reader's horizons.

Crossdressers and Those Who Share Their Lives. Rudd, Peggy. Pm Publications, Second edition. Waltham, MA. 2000.
Crossdressers: And Those Who Share Their Lives, by Peggy J. Rudd, Ed.D, is her third book on the topic of transgendered lifestyles. This book presents candid reflections of many men who are clearly in touch with their feminine side. The author, as was the case in her previous books on the topic, recommends understanding, acceptance and tolerance of an unusual but not impossible lifestyle.

1999 Printings

Reclaiming Genders: Transsexual Grammars at the Fin de Siecle. More, Kate and Whittle, Stephen, Editors. Cassell Academic; (October 1999)
An interdisciplinary work bringing together an international group of transgender writers, this text provides a collection of essays that are central to both academia and activism. Based on academic and "street" experiences, the book addresses the practical issues faced in changing the world view of gender while forcing theory a step forward from limitations of "queer", feminism and postmodernism. In a wide-ranging set of contributions, it addresses our engendered places now and what we can aim for in the future. It evaluates the mechanism we can use to galvanize both the micro theories of gender as a personal experience of oppression and the macro theories of gender as a site of social regulation. The collection aimes to take identity politics and reclaim identity for the "self".

Sissies and Tomboys: Gender Nonconformity and Homosexual Childhood. Rottnek, M., Editor. New York University Press; (May 1999)

The Sixteen Satires. Juvenal, Green, Peter. Vernon, Wendall, translator. Penguin USA (Paper); 3rd edition (February 1999)

1998 Printings

Current Concepts in Transgender Identity. (Garland Reference Library of Social Science Vol. 976). Denny, D. Garland Pub; (March 1998)

Men as Women, Women as Men: Changing Gender in Native American Cultures. Lang, S. Univ of Texas Press; (1998)
As contemporary Native and non-Native Americans explore various forms of "gender bending" and gay and lesbian identities, interest has grown in "berdaches," the womanly men and manly women who existed in many Native American tribal cultures. Yet attempts to find current role models in these historical figures sometimes distort and oversimplify the historical realities. This book provides an objective, comprehensive study of Native American women-men and men-women across many tribal cultures and an extended time span.

Transgender Care: Recommended Guidelines, Practical Information, and Personal Accounts. Israel, G., Tarver, D. Shaffer, D. Temple Univ Press; (January 1, 1998)
By empowering clients to be well-informed medical consumers and by delivering care providers from the straitjacket of inadequate diagnostic standards and stereotypes, this book sets out to transform the nature of transgender care. In an accessible style, the authors discuss the key mental health issues, with much attention to the vexed relationship between professionals and clients. They propose a new professional role; that of "Gender Specialist."

1996 Printing

Blending Genders: Social Aspects of Cross-Dressing and Sex Changing. Ekins, R., Editor. Routledge; (March 1996)
Blending Genders is concerned with those who attempt to or succeed in blending various aspects of gender. The book describes personal experiences of cross-dressers and their social organization--in both "outsider" and "respectable" communities. The contributors consider the medical framework through which gender blending is so often seen and examine the treatment afforded gender blending in literature, the press and telephone sex lines. The book concludes with a discussion of the lively debates that have taken place concerning the politics of transgenderism in recent years and recent contributions to contemporary cultural and queer theory.

1995 Printings

Eros and Evil: The Sexual Psychopathology of Witchcraft, Contains the Complete Text of Sinistrari’s Demoniality. Masters, R.E.L. AMS Press, Reprint edition. 1995.

Gender Identity Disorder and Psychosexual Problems in Children and Adolescents. Zucker, Kenneth J. Guilford Press. 1995.
An in-depth resource on the diagnosis, assessment, etiology, and treatment of gender identity disorder in children and adolescents, reviewing recent clinical work and research in the field. After an overview of the disorder, a section on young children explores the disorder in both boys and girls, looking at toy and role play and anatomic dysphoria as well as biological research on the disorder. The second section focuses on adolescents, transvestic fetishism, and homosexuality. Integrates information from the largest sample of children with the disorder ever studied, as well as studies of adults. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

Gendermaps: Social Constructionism, Feminism, and Sexosophical History. Money, J. Continuum Pub. 1995.
Money (pediatrics, medical psychology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine) introduced the concept of gender role in 1955. Here, he explains the concept of gendermaps for general readers, exploring the history of gender differentiation and its impact on contemporary, social constructionist explanations of male and female. He discusses four categories of gender coding, feminism before and after gender, and mismatched gender maps. Can you trust a man who equates men's pornography with women's romance novels? Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

Medical, Legal and Workplace Issues for the Transsexual. Sheila Kirk, MD and Martine Rothblatt JD. Together Lifeworks; 1st ed. edition (December 31, 1995)
Medical, Legal and Workplace Issues for the MTF & FTM Transsexual supplies comprehensive and accurate information addressing the medical, legal and workplace issues encountered through every phase of the sometimes challenging transition process. From the "real-life test", to surgical, medical and legal concerns, to the start of life "thereafter", this book provides the necessary tools and information to make transitioning proceed smoothly and successfully. A "must-read" for male to female and female to male transsexuals beginning or currently engaged in the transition process.

1994 Printing

The Lenses of Gender: Transforming the Debate on Sexual Inequality. Sandra Lipsitz Bem. Yale University Press, reissue edition. 1994.
In this book, a leading theorist on sex and gender discusses how hidden assumptions embedded in our cultural discourses, social institutions, and individual psyches perpetuate male power and oppress women and sexual minorities. Sandra Lipsitz Bem argues that these assumptions, which she calls the lenses of gender, shape not only perceptions of social reality but also its more material aspects-like unequal pay and inadequate daycare. Her penetrating and articulate examination of these hidden cultural lenses enables us to look at them rather than through them and to better understand recent debates on gender and sexuality.

1992 Printing

Accounting for Transsexualism and Transhomosexuality: The gender identities of over 200 men and women who have petitioned for surgical sex reassignment of their sexual identity. Tully, B. London. Whiting and Birch. 1992.

1990 Printing

Clinical Management of Gender Identity Disorder in Children and Adults. Blanchard and Steiner. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press. 1990
From Book News, Inc.Ten contributions examine the various syndromes of gender identity disturbance in males and females. Case studies are provided as well as descriptions of different treatment approaches and their effectiveness. No index. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

1989 Printing

Gender Blending: Confronting the Limits of Dualality. Devor, Holly. Indiana University Press. 1989.

1987 Printings

In Search of Eve: Transsexual Rites of Passage. Anne Bolin, South Hadley, MA: Bergin & Harvey, 1987
"In Search of Eve is an absorbing account of the sociocultural aspects of gender transition. . . . [Bolin] has produced a carefully crafted, clearly written monograph which scholars of both sexuality and gender can profitably read. I would recommend it also for upper-level students in such courses. The book contains many fascinating insights and new findings." Contemporary Sociology

Transsexualism and Sex Reassignment. Ross, M; Walters, W., Editors.
Oxford University Press; (January 1987)

1984 Printing

Funk and Wagnall’s Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology, and Legend. Leach, M., Editor. HarperCollins; Reprint edition (September 1984)

1980 Printing

Transsexuality in the Male: The Spectrum of Gender Dysphoria. Koranyi, R. Charles C Thomas Pub Ltd; (June 1980)

1977 Printing

Transsexual Phenomenon. Benjamin, Harry. Warner Books (Mm); (April 1977)

Reviewer: Linda Simpson from Seattle, WA
Although there are many in-depth and up-to-date books and information out there today, this book basically started today’s awareness of the problem and laid the groundwork for standardized treatment of the transsexual. It is still a helpful reference but also provides a historical look into transsexualism. Highly recommended.

1976 Printing

Sex and Gender the Transsexual Experiment. Stoller, Robert. Jason Aronson; (June 1976)

1974 Printing

Origin and Development of Moral Ideas. Westermark, E. Arno Pr; (June 1974)

1970 Printing

Yuman Tribes of the Gila River. Spier, L. Rowman & Littlefield (Non NBN); (January 1970)
Noted anthropologist’s superb study of the relatively primitive tribes south of the Pueblo Indians; one of the basic works in the ethnography of the North American Indian. Complete coverage of tribal distribution, housing, dress, manufactures, time reckoning, social relations, religious beliefs, games, sports, etc. Also included is a selection of important tribal tales. 15 photographs.

1969 Printing

Transsexualism and Sex Reassignment. Green, R. Johns Hopkins Univ Pr; (November 1969)

1960 Printing

Tribes of California (LC History—America – E). Powers, S. Reprint Services Corp; Orig Edition, 1960.

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