Gender Identity

Our latest Review of the Week explores whether gender categories are necessary

Beyond trans : does gender matter?

Davis, Heath Fogg. New York University, 2017
184p bibl index, 9781479855407 $25.00, 9781479875993

Davis (political science, Temple) makes a substantial contribution to discussions about gender identity. He explores how mainstream transgender activism focuses more on making it easier to change administrative sex markers and less how the current, arbitrary paradigm harms everyone. Davis makes a compelling case that “all of us would be better off in a society with dramatically fewer sex-classification policies.” From examining sex markers on government documentation, to sex-segregated restrooms, to single-sex college admissions in the US, to sex-segregated athletics, Davis invites readers to see how removing sex identity markers can benefit “everyone, no matter their sex identity.” The book draws strength from the powerful anecdotes Davis selects to elucidate the arguments he substantiates in each chapter, allowing for readers with gender studies backgrounds to reflect on a new approach to these conversations and also for new readers to gain additional context. The author brilliantly grounds abstract concepts in real human experiences in each chapter. This book is a rare example of a text that speaks fluently to experts and novices alike. Indispensable for all libraries and readership levels.

Summing Up: Essential. All Readership Levels
Reviewer: C. Pinto, Mount Holyoke College
Subject: Social & Behavioral Sciences – Sociology
Choice IssueNov 2017