Outstanding Academic Titles 2022: LGBTQ+ Pride

This week we highlight 2022 Outstanding Academic Titles about LGBTQ+ related topics

1. Bi: bisexual, pansexual, fluid, and nonbinary youth
Savin-Williams, Ritch C. New York University, 2021

Savin-Williams (developmental psychology, emer., Cornell Univ.) offers a necessary, nuanced, and accessible book that foregrounds contemporary uses and understandings of sex, gender, and sexuality. Based on interviews with 69 bisexual youth, many of whom did not easily or strictly identify with the term bisexual, Savin-Williams describes and critiques traditional understandings of bisexuality and, in so doing, demonstrates the difficulty of studying rapidly changing sexual practices, identities, and terminologies. The author also shows how an identity such as bisexual is increasingly complicated, even antiquated, given the increase in self-identified heterosexual cisgender women and cisgender men who engage in same-sex sexual acts; a rising recognition of, and challenges to, toxic gender norms; the acknowledgment and budding acceptance of gender and sexual fluidity; and the growing embrace of, and appreciation for, pansexual, genderqueer, and nonbinary identities. Although a cisgender bias can be found in much of the writing—primarily in the treatment of categories such as female, male, woman, and man as fairly stable, fixed, and comprised of essential traits and desires—this is an essential book for activists, practitioners, and scholars of youth and sexuality. View on Amazon

2. The Cambridge companion to Sappho
ed. by P. J. Finglass and Adrian Kelly Cambridge, 2021

This companion to Sappho is a particularly welcome addition to the existing scholarship in the field. The essays offer excellent guides to the intricacies of the transmission and editions of Sappho’s texts: to her dialect and poetic language, metrical forms, music, and literary genres; to possible performance scenarios for her poetry; and to her relations, both literary and political, to her contemporaries. This is reflected in the four parts into which the 33 essays—all written by respected scholars—are organized: “Contexts,” “Poetics,” “Transmission,” and “Receptions.” It is notable, in a volume of this genre, that the section devoted to reception is the largest: it makes up some 40 percent of the book and has its own index at the end of the volume. Finglass and Kelly (respectively, Univ. of Bristol, Univ. of Oxford, UK) made a laudable effort to be wide-ranging in treating the reception of Sappho—they include China, Japan, and India—but they did not attempt to be exhaustive, as they themselves acknowledge. Including a general index (in addition to the reception index) and a very useful bibliography, this volume will be indispensable for all who are interested in Sappho and her tradition and for those working on archaic Greek poetry in general. View on Amazon

3. What’s your pronoun?: beyond he and she
Baron, Dennis E. Liveright, 2021

What’s Your Pronoun? is the definitive history to date of gender-neutral and nonbinary pronouns in the English language, an array of expressions that have been proposed or used as alternatives to he and she since the time of Shakespeare. Baron (emer., English and linguistics, Univ. of Illinois) is a Guggenheim and NEH fellow, and his linguistic research is meticulous. He explains not only the origin and usage but also the political and philosophical debate surrounding use of the now-outdated gender-neutral he, the plural they, and the array of zies, hirs, teys, and ims in between. The book includes a 62-page “Chronology of Gender-Neutral and Nonbinary Pronouns” and 24 pages of bibliographic notes. What’s Your Pronoun? joins Baron’s own Grammar and Gender (CH, May’86) as an essential reference on the subject. Baron’s other numerous scholarly publications on the relationship between language and gender, law, and technology include A Better Pencil: Readers, Writers, and the Digital Revolution (CH, Mar’10, 47-3527) and The English-Only Question: An Official Language of Americans? (CH, Mar’91, 28-3720). His expertise is indisputable, and his accessible and fluid style ensure the book will find a wide audience. View on Amazon

4. Our children are your students: LGBTQ families speak out
by Tara Goldstein with Pam Baer et al Myers Education Press, 2021

Goldstein (Univ. of Toronto, Canada) has written a must-read book that offers clear and powerful guidance for supporting LGBTQ students and families. The opening chapter offers a model for opening discussions around LGBTQ issues with preservice teachers who have yet to fully grasp what it means to be there for all their students. The book then takes readers directly into the script of a “verbatim play” that draws from interviews with 37 LGBTQ families. It gives voice to many issues that even the most compassionate readers will find eye-opening, topics they may never have thought of before. For example, scene 10 from the play Putting Lipstick on a Pig chastises schools for paying superficial lip service; other scenes examine ways in which teachers inadvertently exclude or embarrass students. Even the excellent 16-page “Unicorn Glossary,” compiled by visual artist benjamin lee hicks, offers grist for conversations bound to arise from this outstanding book. It ought to be in the hands of teacher educators, preservice teachers, and professional development providers; it is that good. View on Amazon

5Trans and non-binary gender healthcare for psychiatrists, psychologists, and other health professionals
by Christina Richards and James Barrett Cambridge, 2021

Historically, persons changing from assigned birth gender have existed but have faced mental health care challenges. Mental health professionals may have doubts about the best treatment for trans and nonbinary clients because they lack up-to-date knowledge and education. Challenges include diagnosing gender dysphoria vs. mental illness, providing housing for nonbinary people, and establishing terms of address (preferred pronouns) for addressing and referring to them. This book examines gender diversity, diagnosis, physical treatment, and trans clients’ interactions with psychiatry. Specifically, building rapport, using clients’ preferred names, and identifying their goals are essential foundations for assessment. These clients may have been abused, so the mental health clinician should not generally do the physical exam. Also discussed here is health screening. Clinicians should consider whether pharmacological and physical therapy adjustments are needed. Endocrine treatment should match the client’s identity. When dopamine-antagonistic antipsychotic agents are prescribed, they elevate prolactin in cis-gender women, trans women, and trans men. Trans and nonbinary clients have a slightly higher incidence of some diagnosable mental disorders and may develop the full range of mental disorders, including body dysmorphic disorder and PTSD, and treatment for these is discussed. So-called conversion therapies have been banned. View on Amazon

Read more about Choice Outstanding Academic Titles.

Sign up for the weekly Outstanding Academic Titles enewsletter

Between December and July you’ll receive a weekly enewsletter from Choice highlighting a themed snippet from our list of Outstanding Academic Titles of 2022.

Sign Up Now

Read previous Outstanding Academic Title list snippets. Click here.

Learn more about Choice’s new technology content channel, LibTech Insights:

Enjoying our reviews? Academic librarians may sign up for a complimentary trial of Choice Reviews for their institution.

*Trial limited to academic institutions that have not had a trial/subscription to Choice Reviews in the past 24 months. The offer is limited to institutional trials only, not available to individuals/publishers.