Towards a Livable Mode of Existence: Judith Butler’s [Undoing Gender]

Front cover of Judith Butler's Undoing Gender (2004)Reading Butler is truly a worthwhile exercise for the mind interested in gender, queer theory, and human life in general. Undoing Gender is essentially a revision of Butler's groundbreaking book entitled Gender Trouble, which was originally published in 1990. In Undoing Gender, Butler not only adds more nuance … Continue reading Towards a Livable Mode of Existence: Judith Butler’s [Undoing Gender]

Masculinity Without Men? Judith Halberstam’s [Female Masculinity]

When we invoke the iconic image of James Bond, masculinity is usually one of the first notions that comes to mind. My friend and colleague, Dan Murphy, insightfully points out that even when James Bond utters his casual introductory catchphrase, "Bond, James Bond," these simple words resonate within our thoughts because they express "an appealing version … Continue reading Masculinity Without Men? Judith Halberstam’s [Female Masculinity]

Ellen Wittlinger’s [Parrotfish]: A Transgender Coming-Out Novel

What made a person male or female, anyway? The way they looked? The way they acted? The way they thought? Their hormones? Their genitals? What if some of those attributes pointed in one direction and some in the other? - Ellen Wittlinger, Parrotfish (p. 131) Although Julie Anne Peters' Luna was the first young adult text to tackle … Continue reading Ellen Wittlinger’s [Parrotfish]: A Transgender Coming-Out Novel

On Transgenderism and Transition: The Case of Julie Anne Peters’ Luna

Locating narratives of transgender persons (particularly teens) is no easy task, especially when considering that fictional works (excluding film and television) with central transgender protagonists didn't really surface until the late 1980s and early 1990s. One of the first fictional attempts to portray issues transgenderism is Bill's New Frock, a children's book written in 1989 by … Continue reading On Transgenderism and Transition: The Case of Julie Anne Peters’ Luna

Queer Times: An Analysis of David Levithan’s [Two Boys Kissing]

In the notes and acknowledgments section written at the end of Two Boys Kissing, author David Levithan states that "This isn't a book I could have written ten years ago" (199). Levithan is absolutely right. Back in 2003, when I was still a sophomore in high school, I could never fathom the possibility of finding a … Continue reading Queer Times: An Analysis of David Levithan’s [Two Boys Kissing]