Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity

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Seal Press, 2009 - Psychology - 390 pages
6 Reviews
A provocative manifesto, "Whipping Girl" tells the powerful story of Julia Serano, a transsexual woman whose supremely intelligent writing reflects her diverse background as a lesbian transgender activist and professional biologist. Serano shares her experiences and observations ? both pre- and post-transition ? to reveal the ways in which fear, suspicion, and dismissiveness toward femininity shape our societal attitudes toward trans women, as well as gender and sexuality as a whole.
Serano's well-honed arguments stem from her ability to bridge the gap between the often-disparate biological and social perspectives on gender. She exposes how deep-rooted the cultural belief is that femininity is frivolous, weak, and passive, and how this ?feminineOCO weakness exists only to attract and appease male desire.
In addition to debunking popular misconceptions about transsexuality, Serano makes the case that today's feminists and transgender activist must work to embrace and empower femininity ? in all of its wondrous forms.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - raschneid - LibraryThing

I've read and thought a lot about gender, but this book changed the way that I think about gender identity and "gender performance" (a term that Serano doesn't bother to reclaim, although she does ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ametralladoras - LibraryThing

I'm torn on what rating I should give this book. I feel like this book was written to be sampled by chapter and not actually read cover to cover. My criticisms is that this book gets very repetitive ... Read full review


Trans Woman Archetypes in the Media
The Fascination with Feminization
The Medias Transgender Gap
Feminist Depictions of Trans Women
Reconciling Intrinsic Inclinations with Social Constructs
Oppositional Sexism and Sex Reassignment
Traditional Sexism and Effemimania
Critiquing the Critics
Toying with GenderAmbiguous Characters
Fables of the Deconstruction
Effemimania and Feminine Expression
Enforced Ignorance and the Mystification of Femininity
Crossdresser Development
Demystifying Femininity and Unlearning Masculinity
Rethinking Male Privilege
Origins of Femininity

Moving Beyond Cissexist Models of Transsexuality
Cissexual Assumption
Cissexual Gender Entitlement
The Myth of Cissexual Birth Privilege
TransFacsimilation and Ungendering
Moving Beyond Bio Boys and Genetic Girls
ThirdGendering and ThirdSexing
Taking Ones Gender for Granted
Distinguishing Between Transphobia and Cissexual Privilege
Changing Gender Perception Not Performance
Capitalizing on Transsexuality and Intersexuality
Sexist Interpretations of Femininity
Feminist Interpretations of Femininity
The Ramifications of Artificializing Femininity
Trans Woman Manifesto

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About the author (2009)

Julia Serano is a writer and spoken-word artist on the subject of gender with a PhD in Biochemistry from Columbia University. She is a researcher at UC Berkeley in the field of Evolutionary and Developmental Biology and has performed her spoken word at such high-profile events as the National Queer Arts Festival, San Francisco Trans and Dyke March Stages, Ladyfest Bay Area, and The Vagina Monologues. Serano's work has appeared in Bitch magazine's BITCHFest, Clamor, Kitchen Sink, The Believer, The San Francisco Chronicle, and on Invisible Ink Radio (NPR). Julia lives in Oakland, CA.

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