Sam's Reviews > Female Masculinity

Female Masculinity by J. Jack Halberstam
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's review
Mar 19, 2012

liked it
bookshelves: feminism, non-fiction, sex-research, sociology
Read from February 24 to March 19, 2012

Tough reading. For realz. The book is dense and academic, although still accessible if you've got the time.

You can definitely see the gender-binary within the pages of this, despite the concept being about masculine women. As a co-worker put it, gender is "one hot mess", not a "spectrum", necessarily, as it tends to leave out asexual and intersex folks. Genderqueer, genderfuck, guydykes and girlfags are all rather left out of the equation with the spectrum concept.

Regardless of the tendency to rely too much on society’s definitions of gender and sexuality, Halberstam does do a good job, throughout the text, of explaining how gender organizes social life - something I'm glad about. The politics of peeing come up in the first chapter, and my thoughts keep coming back to that - too many trans friends for it not to.

Overall, not a terrible book, and did get me thinking. Probably wouldn't have read it were it not assigned literature for my Feminist Theory class, but definitely put Queer Theory into perspective for me.

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