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Stone Butch Blues
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GROUP READS > June FICTION selection STONE BUTCH BLUES

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message 1: by Alexa (new) - added it

Alexa (AlexaNC) This month our fiction selection is Stone Butch Blues by Leslie Feinberg. A lot of folks have absolutely loved this! Who will be reading it this month with us?


Chantelle | 7 comments I started last night and am immersed! Excellent choice


rebel (followtheriver) | 37 comments I'm gonna try to participate this month! Have it on hold at the library!


message 4: by El (new) - rated it 4 stars

El | 756 comments Mod
Copy at home, will start soon. I've been wanting to read this one for so long. Excited to finally have the chance to read it with other like-minded readers.


message 5: by Alexa (new) - added it

Alexa (AlexaNC) I've got my copy already!


rebel (followtheriver) | 37 comments Picked it up from the library today and the font size looks about 10. My eyes already hurt and I haven't even started it yet! The back summary makes me even more excited to read it, though. Sounds like it will make for a great discussion here!


Chantelle | 7 comments FYI the author is offering a free download of the book in pdf format on her site, for anyone having a hard time getting a copy.


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Natasha Holme (natashaholme) | 280 comments Chantelle wrote: "FYI the author is offering a free download of the book in pdf format on her site, for anyone having a hard time getting a copy."

Ooh, wonderful info, Chantelle. Thank you. Here's the link, people:

www.lesliefeinberg.net/download/479


rebel (followtheriver) | 37 comments I am 100 pages in and so enjoying it that I can barely put it down. (Why has it taken me so long to read this?) I have a question for anyone who might know:

I think I understand what Feinberg means by "stone" from context, but was this a widely used term back then? If so, what did it mean exactly?


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Stef Rozitis | 71 comments i WANT TO READ THIS!!!!!


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Stef Rozitis | 71 comments Chantelle wrote: "FYI the author is offering a free download of the book in pdf format on her site, for anyone having a hard time getting a copy."

thanks


message 12: by El (new) - rated it 4 stars

El | 756 comments Mod
follow the river wrote: "I am 100 pages in and so enjoying it that I can barely put it down. (Why has it taken me so long to read this?) I have a question for anyone who might know:

I think I understand what Feinberg mean..."


I think it was a pretty widely used term back in the day. I've heard it in line with "stone cold bitch" or "stone cold fox". I think in this particular context it's used in line with Jess being an especially masculine butch.

Hah, actually out of curiosity I just looked on Urban Dictionary:
stone butch
n ~ Most masculine of the Butches - may pass as male without actually trying. May identify as transgender, that is identifying outside of the gender usually associated with females. Does all or most of the above in masculine gender expressions. May or may not be sexually aggressive. Will not be made love to as one would a "woman". Will have questioned their gender at some time in their lives. Will not be totally comfortable with their female body. May think of Butch as a separate gender from man & woman.

I just started this book over the weekend. I got about 80 pages in on Saturday and had to put it down because it's all so powerful and intense. My heart was breaking already for what Jess and her friends experienced.

And then Sunday when I woke up I heard about the killings in Orlando, Florida, and my heart broke all over again. I haven't been able to pick up the book again - it all just hits so close to home. And it made me realize that things really aren't that much different since McCarthy era America. :(

I was enjoying this book, and I will finish it, but I need a few days to process, I think.


rebel (followtheriver) | 37 comments Wow, thanks for that definition, El, that's really helpful. :)

I know what you mean about Orlando and this book. Orlando would already hit hard but I think this book made it hit harder. Learning about how gay bars have historically been the only (tenuous) sanctuary for the LGBT community makes this attack even more heinous to me somehow. You're right, it just shows how little things have changed. And it hurts so much. I too am hesitant to open the book again soon. I will finish it this month, though. It's just too much pain at once right now.


Candace | 35 comments So this book was my first literary exposure to the history of the transgender population, and I should also say I've never read anything about the butch perspective (not sure if "butch" is acceptable to say in 2016, I know that it's been used as a slur in the past but since it's in the title I'll go ahead and keep using the term - anyone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong). This book was, overall, a lens to my own stereotypes that I had, which I had because I knew so little (which is how that usually goes anyway). "Stone Butch Blues" opened my eyes to a new side of life that includes its own labels, categories, and hierarchies. In a world where people try to pigeonhole you: what's their gender, are they attracted to the same sex or opposite sex, if they identify as transgender and are attracted to the opposite sex of what they identified with at birth are they this or that......ARGH! Sure I understand how labeling some things can help us organize our own lives, but when it comes to people...can we be okay with not?

The labor aspect of the book came as a welcome surprise. We live in an era where we still have people trying to shut down the unions so for me, reading this reiterated what we need to keep fighting for. Overall, couldn't put this book down!


rebel (followtheriver) | 37 comments I was finally able to finish this book, though it was really emotional to get through after the events at Pulse. It really helped that the book ends on a happy note--so for anyone worried about that, fear not! For a while there it was all misery and I didn't know if I could finish it this month.

I LOVED this book. I think it was one of the best books I have ever read. A lot of that is because it really spoke to me in a place where I'm at right now, struggling with what gender means and what makes someone (specifically myself) a woman vs a man vs a nonbinary person. I could relate a lot to Jess. I'm actually the one who nominated this book, and I didn't even realize this was what it was about. I nominated it because I thought it was a lesbian classic. :)

I also really appreciated how intersectional it was, showing how class/poverty, race, gender, and sexuality all interact to create varying degrees of discrimination and phobias, even within marginalized groups themselves. (view spoiler) It was amazing and sad to me how a lot of the older MOGAI people felt left out of the emerging LGBT movement. The book really exposed how we are afraid of what we consider different, even when we are different ourselves. That's something I myself have to work on, so it was comforting to see I'm not the only one!

I really want to hear everyone else's thoughts on this, so I'm hoping you all get a chance to finish it! I now want to get my hands on every book by Leslie Feinberg. ;)


message 16: by Alexa (new) - added it

Alexa (AlexaNC) I just started this - it looks like it's going to be really really really painful to read! (And yes, the font size is beyond absurd!)


message 17: by Alexa (new) - added it

Alexa (AlexaNC) Reading this is leaving me absolutely shocked at my own ignorance! The whole "three items of feminine clothing" rule. How dare anyone legislate what I wear! How dare anyone have a legal say in my underwear! I had vaguely run across this before - but to see its reality is just overwhelming. Any then the idea that TVs and ice wagons co-existed at the same time? I'm just amazed at my naivete'!


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