This site is the most comprehensive on the web devoted to trans history and biography. Well over 1200 persons worthy of note, both famous and obscure, are discussed in detail, and many more are mentioned in passing - especially in the year-end summaries (see links in right sidebar.)

There is a detailed Index arranged by vocation, doctor, activist group etc.

In addition to this most articles have one or more labels at the bottom. Click one to go to similar persons. There is a full list of labels at the bottom of the page. There is also a search box at the top left. Enjoy exploring!

27 November 2016

Transgender lexicons: Jack Molay


Transgender lexicons:
Virginia Prince
Raven Usher
Chris Bartlett
Jack Molay
 
  • Jack Molay. A Creative Crossdreamer Vocabulary: Reflections on Transgender. Amazon Digital & Blurb, 2015.
Jack Molay is from the ancient Hanseatic city of Bergen. His writings, starting in 2006, were originally, but ambivalently, about autogynephilia, the concept bequeathed by Kurt Freund and Ray Blanchard that disparages gynephilic trans women. Molay transvalued what is useful in the concept and came up with Crossdreamer:
“the act of dreaming about being ones target sex or getting aroused by the idea of being ones target sex. Crossdreamer is a subcategory under the wider umbrella term ‘transgender’ … Crossdreamers may be assigned male or female at birth. Their sexual orientation varies. There is no clear and distinct boundary between crossdreamers and other transgender people.”

This book, most of which originally appeared on www.crossdreamers.com is in the form of a dictionary or lexicon. There are in fact three parts:

1. The Creative Crossdreamer Vocabulary;
2. Words that do not belong in a crossdreamer vocabulary;
3. Appendix: Transgender Dictionary.

We will take these in reverse order.

Appendix: Transgender Dictionary.


Unlike the main Vocabulary, this section has several words per page. Quite a few of the terms here are also found in the Creative Crossdreamer Vocabulary, but with a different emphasis. This is mainly a dictionary in the standard sense of attempting to define how other people (other trans persons) use words.

As in other lexicons that we have considered, it is light on history, for example She-Male, described as a derogatory term used in pornography, is defined: “A genetic male who has physical characteristics of both male and female. This term should never be used for a real life non-op MTF transsexual (to whom it may refer).” In addition to ignoring RuPaul, this of course ignores how the term was used by and about Christine Jorgensen and Coccinelle. Only later was the term appropriated in pornography. The definition also denies the choice of the term to trans women working in pornography.

Jack defines Gender : “(1) In social studies: the socially constructed roles, behaviors, activities, and attributes that a given society considers appropriate for men and women. (2) In biology: the state of being male or female. The biology of gender is a scientific analysis of the physical basis for behavioural differences between males and females. “ But then defines Transitioning: “Wikipedia defines this as the process of changing genders - the idea of what it means to be female or male. I am using the term for the process of changing ones biological sex, arguing that an M2F transsexual woman is a woman/has the female gender both before and after the transition (see also sex reassignment surgery).” There is a serious equivocation here. What a transsexual woman has before and after is not the socially constructed roles, etc. Everybody has that. What she has before and after is a gender identity. The HBS people repeatedly conflated gender and gender identity, and it is part of their legacy that many today make the same conflation.

He defines Transgenderist as per Virginia Prince’s usage, as promoted by Richard Docter and IFGE, but does not mention that Vivian Namaste uses the term with no Princian connotations at all. He does add the useful comment: “Some deny that transgenderists exist, arguing that they are either misled transsexuals or ‘autogynephiliacs’. The term must not be confused with ‘transgender’, which is an umbrella term for all gender variant people.”

Jack has an excellent section on the different types of Separatists: 1) Classic transsexuals 2) HBS 3) transkids (Blanchardian) 4) Princians 5) truscum.

Words that do not belong in a crossdreamer vocabulary


This section has only four entries: Autoandrophilia; Autogynephilia; Homophobia; Transphobia.

The section header is of course a rhetorical flourish. We very much need to talk about these four to be able to counter them.

There is a honest evaluation of crossdreamers:

“Many crossdreamers are transphobic in the sense that they express strong negative feelings about transgender and transsexual people. This may come as a surprise to outsiders, as it is pretty clear that crossdreamers themselves are transgender (in the wide sense of being gender variant). Some are even transsexual. 
The explanation for this paradox is found is normally found in their upbringing and social conditioning. They have been brought up to believe trans equals perversion. Now they try to dismiss any doubts about their own sexuality and identity by dismissing all those who may undermine their self-image.”

It is a pity in a way that there is no discussion of Anne Vitale’s concept of Gender Deprivation Anxiety Disorder, which would fit in well here.

The Creative Crossdreamer Vocabulary


Normally in a dictionary, neologisms are avoided in that the point of the book is to record other persons’ usages. However the point of this book is to articulate the Crossdreamer philosophy, and to that end there are many new words, most of which are considerately marked with a *.

However let us first look at the words that appear both here and in the Appendix: Transgender Dictionary.

Separatist. The heterosexual male-dressers (a la Virginia Prince) has been moved to (1), and an extra category added: “6) Some crossdreamers believe their cross-gender erotic fantasies are purely fetishistic, and that they therefore have nothing in common with transsexual people. Alternatively: They believe all trans people are fetishists, and fetishists only. The operative phrase here is ‘We are normal men/women with a sexual kink’.

Transsexual, a one-paragraph entry in the Appendix, is now a full-page essay. It mentions the therapies available, and that “most of them are deeply anchored in one, fairly distinct, sex identity”. He continues: “transsexual men and women are different from many other transgender people, some of whom may be more ‘gender fluid’, and concludes: “It seems to me that many, if not most, transsexuals have been crossdreamers, in the sense that they have had sexual fantasies about having sex as their target sex. There is simply no other way for them to fantasize about having sex. But note that not all crossdreamers are gender dysphoric. Moreover, not all gender dysphoric crossdreamers transition.”

Some of the new words are not Jack’s and thus are not marked with a *. This include Transgifted (proposed by Esther Pirelli); Quackaphilia – for the attraction to quack theories such as autogynephilia (proposed by Felix Conrad), Cistem – the social naturalness of non-transgender (proposed by Christine Marie Jentof).

Some of the new terms:

Ambiviolence – those who attack in others what they are afraid of in themselves.

Creative Crossdreaming - using artistic creativity to express and understand the crossdreamer self, and to engage in crossdreamer erotic fantasies.

Crossgrief – “a deep and intense feeling of grief and sorrow from that comes from the realization that your real life is in some way misaligned with your inner life”.

Dark Crossdreamers – “Dark crossdreamers are people who have managed to suppress their transgender side completely. They are not even aware of splitting (i.e. a mental compartmentalization of their other side). … The existence of dark crossdreamers makes it impossible to determine how large a proportion of the human population is actually crossdreamers (or transgender, for that matter).”

Hormony – “The feeling of peace, calm and harmony transgender people often feel after starting taking the hormones of their target sex. This applies to transsexuals, but also to other male to female and female to male crossdreamers who take such hormones in order to get relief from their dysphoria.” Jack does not mention that this usage is a reversal of the joke that Harry Benjamin made when he met Sigmund Freud in the 1930s.

Ideofluster - “words used to describe him or her cease to make sense. This can cause much confusion and uncertainty, and may lead to an identity crisis.”

Normailien - “they try to adapt to the gender identity and the gender roles their friends, families and colleagues expect of them”.

Splitter – “crossdreamers who split their minds in two, leaving one part for the inner sex and one for the outer.”

This is just a sample that I have selected.

There is narrative power in the Crossdreamer vision. It deconstructs the barrier between trans and cis, and perhaps unifies transsexual, transvestite, drag and dreamers more so than the word ‘trans’ does. It especially allows for the fact that we each dream of gender in our own way, and find different solutions. The transsexual path is not for all.


This book is short and an easy read. It will repay being visited more than once.

18 November 2016

Otto Spengler (1876? – 194?) businessperson.

(I wrote a less detailed version of this in April 2009. This revision incorporates details from sexologists Talmay, Henry and Benjamin.)

Otto’s family were German. Otto was the 13th of 14 children. The first five died of cholera. The youngest also died young. His father died when he was four, and from then he slept with his mother in her bed until he was 14. He was her Nesthäckchen, the youngest living. He was girlish in appearance and his dressmaker sister used him as a dress model. He often wore girls’ shoes and dresses as a child.

A first experience with a woman at age 18 resulted in a gonorrhea infection. He emigrated to the US at age 19 (1895?).

A casual gift of theatre tickets to a young woman led to him being approved by her mother, and to marriage. They had two daughters and a son. Otto wore female clothing at all opportunities and wore female underwear under his male clothing at other times. He built up a wardrobe of 70-100 dresses. All the family knew of his dressing. He went to many masquerade balls in female dress. The younger daughter called him her papa-lady. He kept his hair long, but pinned up. He did not go to a barber for over twenty-five years, despite his wife’s urging. Nevertheless he became a successful businessman.

Back in Berlin Otto applied to the police for a permit to transvest, but without success. He transvested in public anyway. Magnus Hirschfeld said that he was an inverted lesbian, and he joined a Berlin lesbian club that tolerated transvestites.

He was a member of Hirschfeld’s Wissenschaftlich-humanitäres Komitee (Scientific-Humanitarian Committee), and corresponded with Hirschfeld. In May 1906 Spengler gave a lecture on sexual intermediates to the German Scientific Society in New York – this is the earliest known lecture on the subject in New York.

In 1912 Otto was propositioned by a friend who found him in female clothing. He did not get any satisfaction from the encounter, but found it interesting.


An account of Spengler and a few other transvestites was the first such to be presented to doctors in the US. This was in a lecture by the sexologist Bernard Talmey to the New York Society of Medical Jurisprudence in December 1913, and published the next year in the New York Medical Journal. Spengler is not named, but simply referred to as ‘Mr S” and “first patient”.

In 1916 the five-year-old daughter of Otto’s neighbor was sent out to buy milk and was raped and murdered. The janitress tattled to the police about Spengler’s dress habits and he became the prime suspect. A search found blood-stained clothing (from his wife’s most recent period) and for four weeks he was under constant supervision. He had an alibi from a servant, and the police offered the servant $2,000 to change her story, but she remained loyal. It was established that the blood was menstrual, and the investigation was discontinued. The crime was never solved.

Spengler had corresponded for many years with the Oswego, New York transvestite doctor, Mary Walker, and attempted to secure her collection of pictures and letters when she died in 1919.

He had become a medical patient of Harry Benjamin who in 1928, at Spengler’s request , prescribed the newly developed progynon (later known as estradiol), an estrogenic hormone, and x-ray sterilization of the testicles. This was Benjamin’s first transgender case.

Shortly afterwards, Otto’s wife and son left him. The son had become the youngest press agent on Broadway, but died of tuberculosis at age 21.

Spengler suffered a financial loss in the Depression, but continued with a mail-order business and press-cutting service. He boasted that he had sold to the Prince of Wales, and to the Soviet Government.

In 1931 when Magnus Hirschfeld visited New York, Otto was noted in the audience and was pleased to be referred to as a typical transvestite. Spengler himself quoted Talmey’s article in a letter about himself to the New York Evening Post in 1933.

Spengler is one of the transvestites profiled in George W Henry’s Sex Variants, 1941, where he is given the pseudonym Rudolph von H. Shortly after that Otto was in a street accident, and was taken unconscious to hospital. When his underwear was discovered, the examining physician wrote into the hospital record: “patient is obviously a degenerate".

When George Henry (or one of his assistants) interviewed Otto, he was 64, blind in one eye because of cataract and glaucoma, and living alone in a small dingy apartment cluttered with figures and portraits of women and with forms to display dresses. There is no record of his passing.

*Not the German political philosopher.
  • Otto Spengler. Monatsberichte des Wissenschaftlich-humanitären Komitees, 5, 1906. Reprinted in 151. Jonathan Katz. Gay American History: Lesbians And Gay Men In The U.S.A. A Discus Book, 1978: 575.
  • Bernard Simon Talmey. "Transvestism. A contribution to the study of the psychology of sex", New York Medical Journal, 21 Feb 1914, pp.362-368.  Incorporated into his Love, a Treatise on the Science of Sex-Attraction: For the Use of Physicians and Students of Medical Jurisprudence. New York: Practitioners' Pub. Co, 1915: 298-307. Partially reprinted in Jonathan Katz. Gay/Lesbian Almanac. Harper & Row. 1983: 344-8.
  • Otto Spengler. Letter to the Editor. New York Evening Post, February 15 1933.
  • George W. Henry. Sex Variants: A Study of Homosexual Patterns. New York: Paul B. Hoeber 1948: 487-98.
  • Harry Benjamin. The Transsexual Phenomenon. Warner Books Edition 1977: 51.
  • Harry Benjamin. “Introduction”. In Richard Green & John Money. Transsexualism and Sex Reassignment. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1969: 1-2.
  • Leah Cahan Schaefer & Connie Christine Wheeler. “Harry Benjamin's first ten cases (1938-1953): a clinical historical note”. Archives of Sexual Behavior 24:1 Feb 1995: 3. Online at www.helen-hill.com/pdf/hbfirst10cases.pdf.
  • Jennifer Terry. An American Obsession: Science, Medecine, and Homosexuality in Modern Society. University of Chicago Press, 1999: 111-2, 259-260,
  • Joanne Meyerowitz. How Sex Changed: A History of Transsexuality in the United States. Cambridge, Ma, London: Harvard University Press, 2002: 46, 298n105.
  • Pierre-Henri Castel. La métamorphose impensable: essai sur le transsexualisme et l'identité personnelle.Gallimard, 2003: 51, 54, 465, 466, 472.
-----------------

There seems to be no record of Spengler’s birth year. I am using the 1948 edition of George W Henry Sex Variants. However the first edition was 1941. In the undated interview with ‘Rudolph von H’, it is stated that he ‘is now sixty-four years old’. For the book to be published in 1941, the interview cannot be later than 1940. Therefore I have presumed a birth year of 1876.

Various books on homosexuality, more than listed, mention Spengler’s May 1906 lecture in Chicago, and some treat him as a gay-rights pioneer (despite the lack of homosexuality in his life), but do not at all mention his transvestity. Of particular note is Terry’s book which writes about Spengler’s lecture in one chapter, and then about Rudolph von H in another, but does not mention that it is the same person.

Spengler would seem to be the first recorded trans person to take artificial hormones.

Did Spengler have a female name for himself? At a guess, yes. However it is not recorded by Talmey, Henry or Benjamin.

Benjamin discusses Spengler within the section The Fetishistic Transvestite. Except for Progynon, Otto seems to have stayed as such until old age. Like many trans persons in the early 20th century, the question arises: if modern technology were then available, would he have progressed into womanhood? That could be argued either way, but despite being the first patient to receive external estrogen, he never started living as female, unlike say Danielle O’L also in New York in the 1930s.

Castel says that Benjamin first met Spengler in 1938, Wheeler & Schaefer say that they met in the 1920s, but that HB became his doctor only in 1938; in Sex Variants, Spengler says that he was then 52, which would seem to be 1928. Benjamin in Green & Money, 1969, says the ‘early 1920s’. As Progynon was developed by Adolf Butenandt and his future wife, and was first on the market in 1928, 1928 or 1929 is the most likely date for Spengler’s treatment by Benjamin.

Harry Benjamin, 1965: 51, knows of Talmey’s discussion of Spengler, but does not seem to know of Henry’s.

Wheeler & Schaefer say that Spengler married at age 26, but Spengler interviewed by Henry says 19.
Wheeler & Schaefer say: “Magnus Hirschfeld informed Otto that he, Otto, was in fact also the inspiration for his famous work published in 1910, Transvestism (English translation, 1991)”. They give no page reference. I have looked in both the 1991 translation and the German original and fail to confirm this.

Wheeler & Schaefer say: ” Otto's transvestism was described by Talmay in his medical book entitled Love as a "sexo-aesthetic inversion of a pure artistic imitation, occurring in highly artistic, honorable, moral, inconspicuous, nonoffensive individuals who would never commit wrong when masquerading". Actually, speaking not of Spengler in particular but transvestism in general, Talmay says that it “is a sexo-esthetic inversion of pure artistic imitation. Hence it occurs mostly in artists and in men of letters, i.e., in persons endowed with a highly developed artistic taste. Such persons are, as a rule, disgusted at the sight of the organs of the sex to which the individual by anatomical configuration belongs, while such sights offer to the homosexual individual additional charm and piquancy.”

Books in which one would expect to find at least a mention of Otto Spengler, but is disappointed:
  • Charlotte Wolff. Magnus Hirschfeld: A Portrait of a Pioneer in Sexology. 1986
  • George Chauncey. Gay New York. 1994

The original version of this article was 18 April 2009. A few weeks later, a blogger by the moniker of Tianewu stole my text and posted it as her own work.

14 November 2016

Harry Benjamin’s first 10 cases: a disambiguation


  • Connie Christine Wheeler & Leah Cahan Schaefer “Harry Benjamin's first ten cases (1938-1953): a clinical historical note”. Archives of Sexual Behavior 24:1 Feb 1995. Online at www.helen-hill.com/pdf/hbfirst10cases.pdf. Revised as the Afterword to Randi Ettner. Confessions of a Gender Defender: A Psychologist's Reflections on Life Among the Transgendered. Evanston, IL: Chicago Spectrum Press, 1996.
Wheeler & Schaefer use pseudonyms to refer to 8 of the 10 patients. However most of the patients are now discussed in trans histories either under different pseudonyms or by their real (ie. post-transition) name. In their revision for Ettner’s book, they used quite different names in some cases. These are marked CGD. Names used in Benjamin’s The Transsexual Phenomenon are marked HBTP. The usage in How Sex Changed by Joanne Mayerowitz is marked JMHSC, and that of Susan Stryker’s Transgender History as SSTH.

(Page references to HBTP: eg p32/13 mean p32 in the 1977 Warner edition and p13 in the PDF)

Actually Benjamin’s first trans case was Carla van Crist in the mid-1920s. Apparently Benjamin simply suggested that she go to Magnus Hirschfeld in Berlin, which she did. She was half-German. Presumably Benjamin never started a file on her, and later, in the 1950s, when asked about her was unable to remember. The lack of a file meant that Wheeler and Schaefer did not know about her.

  1. Otto Spengler

Otto, whom Benjamin regarded as a Type II Fetishistic Transvestite, made a hobby of meeting sexologists and being mentioned, but not always named, in their publications. He met Magnus Hirschfeld, and was described in Bernard Talmey’s 1913 article "Transvestism: A contribution to the study of the psychology of sex", where he is referred to “Mr S” and “First patient". George W. Henry, in his Sex Variants, 1948, also discusses Otto, but under the name of Rudolph von H. HBTP discusses Otto anonymously on p51/23, but mentions that Talmey had described the case, which permits identification. JMHSC and both versions of Wheeler and Schaefer use the name Otto Spengler.

  1. Sally Barry

Sally was Benjamin’s first case that he helped through to surgery. She was discovered by Alfred Kinsey who referred her to Benjamin. In HBTP Sally is discussed anonymously p106-7/49 and in detail p299-307/141-2 where she is referred to as “H.”. Wheeler & Schaefer refer to her as Barry (as a forename) and then as Sally. JMHSC refers to her as Val Barry (Barry as a surname). SSTH denies her the dignity of a name and refers to her as the “mayhem” case (referring to a legal provision that prevented surgery in the US). In CGD she is called Van for the male phase and Susan afterwards.

  1. Carol

Real name Barbara Ann Richards, and then Mrs Barbara Wilcox. JMHSC refers to her by both these names; Richard Doctor’s biography of Virginia Prince simply calls her Barbara Ann Wilcox. In CGD she is renamed to Barbara. She was an early pioneer who petitioned the Superior Court of California to change her name and legal gender - in 1941!!

  1. Christian

Real name Lauren Wilcox. Barbara’s spouse: first wife and then husband. Barbara took the media spotlight, and Lauren transitioned quietly. JMHSC refers to him as Lauren Wilcox. In CGD he also became Lauren.

  1. Doris

This person’s real name was Louise Lawrence. She published under the pseudonym of Janet Thompson. She is surprisingly not mentioned, except as the writer Janet Thompson, in HBTP, despite all the work that she and Benjamin had done together. Wheeler & Schaefer call her Doris. JMHSC and SSTH refer to her by her real name. CGD calls her Louise.

  1. Frank

Frank saw Benjamin in 1951 at age 35. Two years later Benjamin referred him to Albert Ellis, and did not see him again until 1972. “after 20 years of vacillating, I am no longer interested at all in a sex-change”. In CGD he is referred to as Emory.

  1. Christine Jorgensen

Everybody calls her Christine Jorgensen.

  1. Harold

Christine Jorgensen's first referral to Benjamin. Harold saw Benjamin on only three separate occasions, over a period of 26 years, 1953-70. It is not known if Harold ever did transition.

  1. Inez

This seems to be Clara Miller, one of the autobiographies in the appendix to HBTP by REL Masters, and called C in the Biographical Profiles. In CGD she is renamed Vera.

  1. Janet


This person appears in HBTP paperback as the last four photographs, and is discussed anonymously p137/63. She is sometimes referred to as the tattoo woman because Benjamin did not give her a name. CGD renames her as Claire.

11 November 2016

Leah Cahan (Schaefer) (1920 – 2013) singer, psychologist

Leah Cahan was born in Milwaukee, and raised in Chicago. She was the daughter of an Orthodox rabbi who had escaped the pogroms in Lithuania.

Intending to be a music teacher, she started singing at age 15 at Central College (now Roosevelt University). After college she was in The Barries, a female trio. They lasted five years, sang on NBC radio in New York, were among the first artists to record for what became Capitol Records, and had a hit record with the Johnny Mercer, “San Fernando Valley”.

She lived in California and learned folk songs. Back in New York she was part of The Wayfarers, and became the first wife of jazz legend Hal Schaefer who was then in the group, and became known as Lee Schaefer.

After her second divorce Leah tried analysis, but after her father died, she slipped into a period of depression while living on unemployment pay.

A second session of analysis in 1953 led to her accepting the suggestion that she herself become an analyst. She was accepted at Columbia Teachers College, and then Columbia University, where she earned an MA and then a doctorate.

A third marriage at this time resulted in a daughter.

For her doctoral thesis she chose the topic of female orgasm. It was then 1961, and the ongoing work by Masters and Johnson had not yet been published. She was given permission by Ernest G. Osborne(1903-63), the head of her department who supervised her thesis until his early death. Leah was also advised by Margaret Mead. She quickly realized that understanding orgasm required understanding a whole life. She interviewed 30 white, middle-class women who were unaffected by the then just-beginning women’s movement. They talked about their first reactions to menstruation, their adolescent sexual encounters, their first sexual act, and how they feel about orgasm and adult sexuality. One finding was how each woman in the study had a negative reaction in childhood to the idea that her parents had sex. Many of the women had never talked to anyone in such detail before.
Leah 1974

The thesis was completed in 1964, and Columbia suggested that a commercial publisher would be appropriate, but it took until 1973 until one was willing.

After graduation, Leah was credentialed as a psychotherapist. After she had built a practice using the name Leah Schaefer, and had established a reputation in the field, she was contacted by Wardell Pomeroy, a co-author of the Kinsey Reports. Pomeroy had been working with Harry Benjamin as a therapist to assess ‘true’ transsexualism. Schaefer was chosen because of her ability to be non-judgmental. Pomeroy was preparing to move to San Francisco, and wanted her to take over his work with transsexuals, which she did. She continued to work with transsexuals for the rest of her life, progressing from evaluation to general therapy.
 
She was the first women president of Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS), 1978-1979. She worked with Connie Christine Wheeler. They interviewed Harry Benjamin in 1979 about the history of the SSSS, he took to them and trusted them with his files. They read all the 1500 or so files, and started meeting regularly with him to discuss what they found.

In 1983 they presented a paper “The Non-Surgical True Transsexual: A Theoretical Rationale”, an elaboration of Harry Benjamin’s Type IV, the person who cross-lives but does not desire gender confirmation surgery. After Benjamin’s death in 1986, Wheeler and Schaefer became the custodians of Harry Benjamin’s professional archives.

Schaefer was president of HBIDGA 1991-5 (before it was renamed WPATH), and was involved in the writing of several editions of its Standards of Care. In 1995 Schaefer and Wheeler published their seminal work, “Harry Benjamin's first ten cases (1938-1953): a clinical historical note”.

Schaefer donated the Benjamin archives and her own archives to the Kinsey Institute in 2007.

Leah 2007
Nancy Gonzales, who met Schaefer in 2008, summarized her work with transsexuals:
“She takes issue with the terms ‘gender dysphoria’ or ‘gender identity disorder’ in referring to these individuals' circumstances.  She feels that it's pejorative and inaccurate to classify this condition as a pathology.  In her professional opinion, most of the presenting problems they have stem from the stigmatization they suffer.  She believes that transsexualism is a birth anomaly and maintains, as do a growing number of scientists, that transsexualism is a naturally-occurring variation in humans and is part of a person's inborn psyche.” 

Leah Scheafer died aged 92.
  • The Barries & Johnny Mercer. “Someone’s in the kitchen with Dinah”. 1944
  • Paul Weston & his Orchestra, The Barries & Johnny Mercer. “San Fernando Valley”. 1944. Lyrics
  • The Wayfarers (Hal Schaefer; Elka Sylvern; Lee Schaefer; Paul Bain). Wandering with the Wayfarers, LP RCA Victor, 1957.
  • Lee Schaefer & Jim Hall. A Girl and a Guitar. LP United Artists, 1958.
  • Lee & Hal Schaefer. Finian’s Rainbow and Brigadoon Remembered. LP United Artists, 1959.
  • Leah Cahan Schaefer. Sexual Experiences and Reactions of a Group of 30 Women As Told to a Female Psychotherapist. Ed D Thesis, Columbia University 1965. Revised as Women and Sex; Sexual Experiences and Reactions of a Group of Thirty Women As Told to a Female Psychotherapist. Pantheon Books, 1973.
  • Leah C Schaefer . "Frigidity." Modern woman.  Charles C Thomas, 1969: 165-177.
  • Edward M Brecher.  "Leah Cahan Schaefer".  The Sex Researchers.  a Signet Book, 1971: 184-202.  
  • Lindsay Miller. “Woman in the News: Dr. Leah Schaefer: A Lot More Than Just Sex”. Washington Post, 7/28/1973. Online.
  • Suzanne Lowry. “Come as you are”. The Guardian, July 5 1974. Online.
  • Leah C. Schaefer & Connie C. Wheeler. “The Non-Surgical True Transsexual: A Theoretical Rationale”. Eighth International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria, Bordeau, September 16-19, 1983. Abstract Revised as "The nonsurgery true transsexual (Benjamin's category IV): A theoretical rationale." International Research in Sexology (Sexual Medicine) 1 (1984).
  • Leah Schaefer. “TV Relationships”. The tv-ts Tapestry, 43, 1984: 30-3. Online.
  • Connie Christine Wheeler & Leah Cahan Schaefer. "Historical overview of Harry Benjamin's first 1500 cases." Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association, Tenth International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 1987.
  • Connie Christine Wheeler & Leah Cahan Schaefer “Harry Benjamin's first ten cases (1938-1953): a clinical historical note”. Archives of Sexual Behavior 24:1 Feb 1995. Online at www.helen-hill.com/pdf/hbfirst10cases.pdf. Revised as the Afterword to Randi Ettner. Confessions of a Gender Defender: A Psychologist's Reflections on Life Among the Transgendered. Evanston, IL: Chicago Spectrum Press, 1996.
  • Jamil Rehman, Simcha Lazer, Alexandru E. Benet, Leah C. Schaefer, and Arnold Melman. "The reported sex and surgery satisfactions of 28 postoperative male-to-female transsexual patients." Archives of sexual behavior 28, no. 1 (1999): 71-89.
  • Stephen B Levine, George R. Brown, Eli Coleman, Peggy T. Cohen-Kettenis, J. Joris Hage, Judy Van Maasdam, Maxine Petersen, Friedemann Pfaefflin, and Leah C. Schaefer. "The standards of care for gender identity disorders." Journal of Psychology & Human Sexuality 11, no. 2 (1999): 1-34.
  • Anne Lawrence, Yvon Menard, Stan Monstrey, Jude Patton, Leah Schaefer, Alice Webb & Connie Christine Wheeler. "The Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association′ s Standards Of Care For Gender Identity Disorders, Sixth Version." World Professional Association For Transgender Health, 2001.
  • Leah Cahan Schaefer & Connie Christine Wheeler. "Guilt in cross gender identity conditions: Presentations and treatment." Journal of Gay & Lesbian Psychotherapy 8, 1-2 (2004): 117-127.
  • Ellen Michel. “A Season of Recognition for KI Donor Dr Leah Schaefer”. Kinsey Today, November 2007. www.indiana.edu/~kinsey/about/images/schaefer-newsletter.jpg.
  • Nancy Gonzales. “When October Goes: My Day with Leah Schaefer”. NCFR, 2008, www.ncfr.org/members-stories/when-october-goes-my-day-leah-schaefer.
  • Dana Beyer. “Remembering Dr. Leah Schaefer, the Sweet Singer-Turned-Psychiatrist Who Healed a Generation of Trans Women”. The Huffington Post, 01/30/2013. www.huffingtonpost.com/dana-beyer/leah-schaefer-trans-women_b_2569123.html.
Discogs
____________________________________________________________

I don’t know why there is no mention at all of Leah Schaefer in Joanne Meyerowitz’ How Sex Changed: A History of Transsexuality in the United States.

Leaf Schaefer started her career as a psychologist while married to her third husband, but using her first husband’s surname.

Schaefer and Wheeler discuss Benjamin’s Type IV as it is usually taken to be, that is as a cross-living, non-op person. However in Benjamin’s 1966 book, as I have discussed, a Type IV is defined as “’Dresses’ as often as possible with insufficient relief of his gender discomfort. May live as a man or a woman; sometimes alternating.” Benjamin’s typology actually erases full-time non-ops, as well as gay and female transvestites and gynephilic High Intensity Type VIs.

Randi Ettner, psychologist and author of Confessions of a Gender Defender, 1996, is Leah’s niece. The book has, as an Afterword, a rewrite of “Harry Benjamin's first ten cases”.

The backing singers here are The Barries
 

31 October 2016

Transgender lexicons: Chris Bartlett

Transgender lexicons:
Virginia Prince
Raven Usher
Chris Bartlett
Jack Molay


  • Chris Bartlett. What does ‘queer’ mean anyway? The Quick and Dirty Guide to LGBTQIA+ Vocabulary. Create Space and Kindle, 2016.
Chris Bartlett is a heterosexual cis man in Colorado with a degree in business studies. He has written a series of ‘quick and dirty guides’ on a number of different subjects, mainly US elections but also BrExit, “Leaving America”, Olympic disasters – and this guide for LGBTQIA+ allies. Amazon Page

He intends this book to enable non-LGBTQIA+ persons to understand queer persons by means of simple definitions, a few case studies and a timeline. Amazon contains several 4 and 5-star reviews to the effect that he has succeeded in this endeavour. To that extent, good luck to him. This review, however, is not of the book from that perspective, but from a trans perspective.

He does not explain who his informants are, but they seem to be a group that embraces non-binary and gender queer, and are probably young in that there is little awareness of changes in usage over time. In a way, what he is attempting is probably so difficult, skating as it does on terminological fashion that is constantly changing, that to do completely successfully would be impossible.  

Chapter 1 – What is LGBTQIA+

He starts with:
“Most readers have probably heard or seen the acronym LGBT and are aware it stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (although they may mistakenly believe the “T” is for “Transexual," a word that is considered offensive).”
So we already have a problem. Many of us, here, are in fact transsexuals or post-transsexuals. I certainly find it offensive for an outsider to tell me that the word is offensive.

A few pages later he tells repeats and expands:
“Some may assume that this ‘T’ stands for ‘Transsexual,’ but that term is used with decreasing frequency and is considered offensive. Still others may think that this ‘T’ has something to do with ‘Transvestitism,’ but that is incorrect — and a topic for a completely different book.”
This does not stop him from bringing in show-biz transvestites: Lily Savage, RuPaul and Freddie Mercury. There is no discussion about whether ‘drag’ and ‘tranvestism’ are the same or different.

Chapter 2 - Transgender and Intersex

Bartlett makes the standard distinction between the two, but does not mention that many of the pioneer generation of trans women such as Roberta Betty Cowell made dubious claims to be intersex. The one and only intersex person mentioned is Georgia Ziadie whom Bartlett refers to only by her marriage title, Lady Colin Campbell. This is an odd choice in that Ziadie is not involved in the movement for intersex rights, and there are those who think that her intersex status is similar to that of Betty Cowell.

A major event in the history of intersex was the abandonment of the word ‘hermaphrodite’ and its replacement by ‘intersex’. A major problem was the distinction between ‘true hermaphrodite’ and ‘pseudo-hermaphrodite’ with the implication that the latter were somehow not ‘true’. Therefore I was disappointed to see Barlett uncritically using ‘true gonadal intersex’ which brings back the old problem. This from a man who thinks that ‘transsexual’ is offensive.

Many intersex persons have objected to the term ‘disorders of sex development’ finding it offensive, and it has not been accepted by most intersex activist groups. Bartlett does not even mention this controversy, but does use the term in passing without even putting it in quotes.

He moves on to transgender. [gender dysphoria]  ”is becoming a regularly used term in medicine and popular culture."  He seem to be unaware that the term "gender dysphoria" was introduced by Norman Fisk in 1973 because 'transsexual' had lost its medical connotations, and he wished to re-pathologize the condition.  That is why many of us avoid it.

Chapter 3 - Gender Fluidity and Nonconformity

This is the chapter where Bartlett seems to be most at home.
[Gender] “is a social construct and is not determined solely by sex but rather as a how a culture has reacted to sexual differences” and “due to the socio-political imbalance between sexes, women's gender has been constructed by men, or as a man’s ideal image of women”.
He lists six gender-neutral pronouns, but not my preferred ‘ae’. He gives elementary sentences on how to use such pronouns, but again remember the specified audience.

Chapter 4 – Tackling Judgment and Prejudice

Bartlett gives quite adequate definitions of homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, internalized homophobia, and discusses their social impact. He then gives a list of offensive words.
“Language plays a big part in this process. The following words and phrases have historically been used to isolate and hurt members of the LGBTQIA + community. There was some hesitation to include in this text language which has so often been used to demean members of the LGBTQIA + community. Ultimately it was deemed responsible to include this section because this book is directed towards well meaning people who have no desire to disparage others. The author encourages readers to use the below knowledge to be an advocate for the correct usage (or non-usage) of this vocabulary.”
His list of offensive words includes ‘transexual’, ‘tranny’ and ‘she-male’. The first of these was expected from the comments made in Chapter 1. As usual, ‘tranny’ but no mention of ‘transy’. Nor is there a mention that ‘tranny’ was quit acceptable until only a few years ago.

Chapter 5 – Relationships in Which Only One Person is Transgender

Bartlett discusses both married persons who transition, and a transitioned trans man who needs to tell his lover of his past. This chapter is quite well done.

Chapter 6 – Gender Identity, Sexuality and Popular Culture.

This chapter is mainly a time-line of events from 1930 to 2015.

Despite that most of the discussion above has been trans, intersex and non-binary, most items in the time–line are gay male and bi male. There are no lesbian entries, and no trans-male entries. The trans entries are Lili Elbe (with the usual misinformation), Stonewall (but without the trans persons), Holly Woodlawn in Trash, and “Walk on the Wild Side”, David Bowie in a dress, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Boy George, the group Queen, Lily Savage, RuPaul, Caitlyn Jenner, Jaden Smith.

The Australian soap opera Number 96 is mentioned for its first gay character, but that Carlotta was in it in 1973 as the first trans playing trans is not mentioned.

Showbiz transvestites Lily Savage and Rupaul are included, but showbiz transsexuals Christine Jorgensen, April Ashley, Coccinelle, Carlotta, Tula, Claudia Charriez, are not.

My Conclusion:

‘transsexual’ is not an offensive term

29 October 2016

Jill Monro (1951 – 1982) porn star

Terri, originally called Teddy, was a Brooklynite of Italian descent. Her father died when she was young, and her mother practically raised her as a girl. As a teenager, Terri had a rhinoplasty and her chin reshaped, electrolysis, took female hormones and silicon enhancements. She trained and was licensed as a cosmetologist.

In March 1976 Terri and a friend hired a car, and then she and the driver, David Rice, exchanged numbers, and they started dating after she broke up with her previous boyfriend. Rice accepted that she was a bit different from other women.
“I am, believe it or not, a fairly straight kind of dude – I mean, I’m not, and never have been, gay. But then, I don’t think Jill was ever a man – she was just born with the wrong kind of equipment. I fell in love with her and together we sailed through the series of operations that would make us a ‘legitimate’ couple.”
David took out a loan for her to have further breast enhancement, and another loan a year later in July 1977 for sexual correction. The pain killers she took after the surgery added to the downers that she was already taking.

After surgery Terri caught David reading Cheri magazine, and felt that she was more beautiful than the model. They took some polaroids and sent them in. Cheri magazine invited them to come in, and a shoot was arranged. Terri took the name Jill Monro from Farrah Fawcett’s character in Charlie’s Angels. David had to write a monthy column sometimes under Jill’s name, and sometimes as Dave Zele.

Terri was quite open about her sexual past, and her appearance in the magazine was an eight-page
article, “The Gal With The Man Made Muff – The Incredible Saga of Jill Monro”.
“Most people didn’t believe that she was born male.  Everybody thought that Cheri magazine was just doing a huge publicity stunt for the numbers, for circulation, for money… whatever you want to call it.”
Jill and David were introduced to Mark Stevens (1943-1989) who was established as a heterosexual adult-film actor despite being mainly gay. Annie Sprinkle refers to him as ‘straight for pay’. Mark and Jill threw theme parties at different clubs in Manhattan. Jill was in several adult films between 1978 and 1982. Late in 1978 Jill had a supposed marriage with Marc Stevens at a Greenwich Village disco. This became an eight-page spread in Cheri magazine.

In 1979 Jill and a female friend went to the nude beach at Rockaway Beach, and were busted for public lewdness. A good lawyer got them off, and the incident was turned into an article for Cheri magazine.

David became a photographer, and did rock music tours, sometimes did the camera work on Jill’s films, and was also her manager.

After a management shake-up at Cheri, David and Jill went over to High Society magazine. By this time she had progressed from cocaine on to heroin. This led to her and David living apart. She got less and less work as a model, and began turning tricks and ran ads in Screw and the Village Voice.

The drugs led to a decline and Terri died at age 31.
  • David Zele (David Rice). “The Gal With The Man Made Muff – The Incredible Saga of Jill Monro”. Cheri magazine, March 1978.
  • Hazel Gravy. “Jill Monro’s Surgeon Tells: How To Become A Woman”. Cheri magazine, May 1978.
  • Dan Zele (David Rice) “All I Want For Christmas Is My Two Front Tits: The Story of Jill Monro”. Cheri magazine, July 1978.
  • Jill Monro & Jane Compton. “Beach Blanket Bust-O”. Cheri magazine, February 1979.
  • “The Wedding of the Decade”. Cheri Magazine, April 1979.
  • George Petros interviews Annie Sprinkle. “Has a hands-on fetish for Trans guys”. The New Transsexuals, 2012. www.georgepetros.com/writings/tnt/Annie-Sprinkle.htm.
  • Interview with David Rice. “Who was Jill Monro?: The Story of New York’s First Transsexual Porn Star:. The Rialto Report, 16 March 2014. www.therialtoreport.com/2014/03/16/who-was-jill-monro-the-story-of-new-yorks-first-transsexual-porn-star/
IMDB

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Some of the dates don’t jive. IMDB lists Jill in the film White Fire, as 1976, before she met David Rice, before correction surgery and before she chose the name.

Jill’s movie period was 1978-82. Compare to Sulka’s prime years 1980-3. Jill was different from other trans porn stars in being post-op before getting into adult movies.