“I know I’m not a man . . . and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m probably not a woman, either. . . . . The trouble is, we’re living in a world that insists we be one or the other.”
With these words, Kate Bornstein ushers readers on a funny, insightful, and wonderfully scenic journey across the frontiers of gender and identity. On one level, Gender Outlaw is an account of Bornstein’s transformation from heterosexual male to lesbian woman, from a one-time IBM salesperson to a playwright and performance artist. But this particular coming-of-age story is also a fascinating and deeply provocative investigation into our notions of male and female, the myths attached to them, and the penalties that befall not only those who transgress the definitions but anyone who blindly conforms to them.
Told with humor, honesty, and outrageous flair, Gender Outlaw is the unique story of a self-described nonbinary transfeminine diesel femme dyke who never stops questioning our cultural assumptions. Whether she is describing the nuts and bolts of her “sex-change surgery” or outing the hidden gender messages in popular culture, Bornstein pushes us gently but profoundly to the farthest borders of the gender frontier.
With a new introduction by the author