Alan Goodman & Margaret Cerullo of Hampshire College: Women Oppress Men

December 12, 2012

Fascinating essay by Hampshire College professors Alan Goodman and Margaret Cerullo explaining how women use gender to oppress men. No, really! Cerullo was quoted in the article they reference stating that she had not even read memoirist Christine Benvenuto’s book, yet she was calling for it to be banned, as she feared it might hurt men’s feelings!

 As part of the Hampshire College book-burning campaign Goodman and Cerullo explain here how women are socially dominant over men, and oppress men by critiquing sex-roles.

Also, women who refer to their ex-husband’s behavior as “creepy” or “ugly” or “greasy” are committing hate speech and their writing should be censored and banned.

Is there something funny in the water at Hampshire College? Or perhaps a time machine casting women back into the dark ages? And look how they throw the little “feminism” thing onto the end! Read professor Goodman and Cerullo’s Daily Hampshire Gazette editorial and judge for yourself. Enjoy!

200px-HampshireCollegeSeal

Alan Goodman & Margaret Cerullo: Coverage invites transgender phobia

By ALAN H. GOODMAN and MARGARET CERULLO

Monday, December 10, 2012

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AMHERST — The Gazette’s Dec. 8 front-page story titled “Pain of sex change” explores a memoir written by a local author who describes the pain of watching her former spouse undergo a sex change. By posting a large color photo of the author, the Gazette suggests that the “pain” to be explored is the author’s alone.

The Gazette leaves the reader without much insight into the reality of the former spouse who clearly underwent a brave, painful and now public transition in the Valley where she and her children also reside.

Lines from the book “Sex Changes,” by Christine Benvenuto, convey moments of compassion for “Tracey” her former spouse, now a trans-gender woman. Yet there are many instances in which the memoir drips with disrespect and prejudice. Although Tracey transitioned to female over eight years ago, the memoirist refers to her to as “he.” Benvenuto writes, “There is something slightly creepy and more than slightly sad about a man in women’s clothes.” She peppers the memoir with descriptions of Tracey as “creepy, greasy, disgusting, and ugly.”

The Gazette never poses the question: What counts for hate speech? Benvenuto maintains that her memoir is simply “her story about a painful divorce” —not about trans people.

Yet the memoir’s title and the Gazette’s headline focus on Tracey’s transition about sex change. Had the memoir been about a marriage coming undone in a more banal way (infidelity, domestic abuse, alcoholism, falling out of love), the book’s title and anticipated content wouldn’t be much of a sensationalist draw.

Moreover, the author trivializes critiques of her depiction of Tracey as “politically correct.” During the Reagan-Bush years, politicians and pundits deployed the patronizing trope of “P.C.” to discredit nearly any critique of racism or sexism. Might it not be put to rest in 2012?

Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.

What if a heterosexual author described a spouse who came out as gay as a source of “creepy” revulsion — again, due to their sexual orientation? Today, we would regard such texts as racist and homophobic. Must we wait 20 years to see Benvenuto’s depiction as transphobic?

Can a member of a dominant group (straight, white, cis-gendered) write off the political implications of their own hateful language as being merely “personal” — particularly when they insert this language into the public domain in the form of a memoir or media interviews?

Being transgender is neither a mid-life crisis (as described in the book), nor a mental illness, nor a choice for those who feel life unlivable in what feels to be the wrong gender.

Children of trans people, and society in general, deserve stories in which authors present their pain and anger about family members’ transitions in ways that convey respect and compassion for the people they write about.

The stakes are high. In addition to facing rejection from family and community, 95 percent of transgender people report harassment on the job and in public generally.

Moreover, everyday instances of exclusion translate into exponentially high rates of exposure to violence, depression, murder, and suicide. For many trans women, passing as female by changing dress, voice, hair and skin are central to protecting their own mental health and physical safety.

If trans women like Tracey cannot “pass” by wearing “women’s clothing” (found creepy and sad by the author) they are at risk of becoming a target of verbal, physical and sexual assault.

We do not question the rights of individuals to tell their painful personal narratives about what happens when a family member is transgender.

But as feminists taught us since the 1960s, often, the personal is political. Personal hate, when made so public, is hate speech.

Alan H. Goodman is a professor of anthropology at Hampshire College, where Margaret Cerullo is a professor of sociology. In addition to its authors, this commentary was endorsed by Chaia Heller, Visiting Assistant Professor of Gender Studies, Mount Holyoke College; Jamie Theophilos, Mount Holyoke College Class of 2013; Abby Marsh, Hampshire College Class of 2015; Kaeleigh Terrill, University of Massachusetts Amherst Class of 2013; Parks Dunlap, Smith College Class of 2013; Debra Bercuvitz; Kris Thomson; Rabbi Raquel S. Kosovske and Rabbi David Seidenberg.

Hampshire-College-by-Jared-Benedict

http://www.gazettenet.com/opinion/

49 Responses to “Alan Goodman & Margaret Cerullo of Hampshire College: Women Oppress Men”

  1. weirdward Says:

    Excuse me – it is ‘banal’ for women and children to suffer from male violence and domestic terrorism in the home? Like, how boring and passe for the rest of us to have to hear about that again; yawn and pass the porn. Living inside male domestic violence is terrifying and soul destroying for women and children, and in very many cases when they try to speak up they are still not believed; or indeed they are dismissed as ‘banal’, boring, self-victimizing and god knows what else. It also completely dismisses the courage and intelligence it takes to even survive under those kinds of conditions – and to escape.

    And yes, hello, this is so obviously an attempt to silence the voice of a woman whose ex-husband is abusive and controlling – because how dare she speak up, and write about her experiences in a way that Transgender Central does not approve of.

    Also lol at calling her privileged for being straight – what happened to the bit where she was a lesbian who was being homophobic because she refused to acknowledge that her conservative, conventional heterosexual marriage was really a lesbian relationship with another woman??

    I notice that some rabbis are on board with this – so it’s okay for the queer-trans machine to ally with conservative religious institutions when it suits them; but not okay for radfems?

    • Becky Green Says:

      Yes, we’re always banal. Everything about a woman’s life and experiences are deemed banal, which instantly renders her unworthy of public attention, so she becomes invisible. While a man’s life is always celebrated and framed in terms of “a hero’s journey.”

      For example, the article states: “the former spouse who clearly underwent a brave, painful and now public transition”

      So, he elects to have cosmetic surgery on his genitals, puts on feminine attire and he gets called BRAVE for it! (What an amazing accomplishment! He deserves a medal for his bravery!) They also want the readers to believe that his extreme body modification was the expression of some beautiful, glorious self realization he had concerning his “true inner nature.” They flat out reject the notion that his actions reek of self hatred, desperation and mental illness. It’s so uncouth to suggest psychiatric problems when it just doesn’t jive with the story line they’re selling.

      Life as a woman has never fascinated the public until a man took over the role.

      • Marie-France Lesage Says:

        Becky Green: will you marry me? (It’s legal now in Washington!)
        😉

        Um. I mean: very well said!!!

      • Becky Green Says:

        You are too kind! I felt the same of your Skye High piece and I loved that he dropped by to confirm your analysis. Awesome stuff!

      • Ashland Avenue Says:

        Fuck yeah Weirdward, Marie-France, and Becky! Fuck YEAH.

  2. weirdward Says:

    And those academics – hilarious. You can smell the desperation on them. Perhaps inadvertently, Christine Benvenuto has exposed the workings of the entire trans machine; with all of its woman hating conservatism, fun-fem enablers and male entitlement wrapped up prettily in pink. She’s done this without any feminist agenda, without having ten university degrees in gender bullshit – just through the power of her own intelligent observation. And academics are terrified that the general public will read this, and see it makes sense, and the more that happens the more they’ll be watching their next lucrative research grant recede into the distance like a faint dream.

  3. anon male Says:

    how did greasy get transformed into dark, as the text lines are otherwise identical? The’re the ones, not Christine, setting up

    dark:african descent :: greasy:trans

    even though it makes no fucking sense. But then again, the best attacks work that way.

    There’s this asshole who walks around the streets at night who comes up behind people and screams shit at them, or at least he has at me on my way to work (I’m part of that 95% as a white cis dude, even!).

    But it’s always incomprehensible shit.

    Because if he does his act on someone who is O.G., he can just turn around and act retarded so he doesn’t get shot. Meanwhile, regular folks are EXTRA scared because they think the dude knows some new slang or something — hearing things that sound like words but *aren’t* causes your brain to misfire. It puts you off guard as you suddenly feel you’re the one not with the program, that you’re walking HIS streets somehow.

    I guess this is the same kind of turf war, them letting everyone know that we’re on their ivory tower streets and they’re in charge and they ain’t no one to fuck with. (shaolin!) And they brought their whole crew, even random undergrad kiddies who don’t know shit about shit, either, but how the hell would they know that about themselves if their role models in academia with ph.ds are also dumb as dirt?

  4. fwancis Says:

    “Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.”

    Because he IS African-American, but some of you transphobic arseholes can’t accept that he’s always known he was African-American, ever since he heard “Whoop There it is” on the radio. You may find his transition “disgusting”, “racist”, “creepy” but I say that YOU are the disgusting, racist creeps for not accepting his identity and supporting him.

  5. ehungerford Says:

    “Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.”

    Just like Colleen Francis’s manipulative analogy between his sexual exhibitionism/indecent exposure to minor children and race-segregated water fountains, this is a logically fallacious scenario.

    Transgenderism is not an immutable characteristic, nor is it a neurologically or biologically justifiable condition.

    In fact, an honest analogy would instruct readers to consider their REASONABLE REACTION to a trans-racial “African-American” white-skinned person. How do we react to a non-black person PRETENDING TO BE BLACK as her sacred and incontrovertible “identity”?? That’s what we’re talking about.

    • GallusMag Says:

      “Transgenderism is not an immutable characteristic..”

      Transgender isn’t even a DEFINED characteristic. Trans is a philosophy, not a characteristic. A profoundly regressive sex-role philosophy. There is no objective characteristic of a faith-based system, beyond objective evidence of adherence to one.

      • ehungerford Says:

        TRUTH.

        Transgenderism is totally UNDEFINED, which makes it more like a religion than a medical condition. That’s why Sue Landsittele wrote an ENTIRE LAW REVIEW ARTICLE about it!! LOL!

        Strange Bedfellows? Sex, Religion, and Transgender Identity Under Title VII, 104 NW. U. L. REV. 1147 (2010).
        http://www.law.northwestern.edu/lawreview/v104/n3/1147/LR104n3Landsittel.pdf

      • banewmark Says:

        Joy Ladin said she was “sorry” well no quite. She sent this out last week and I go a copy. Seems to be all about Joy Ladin though. I thought readers might find it interesting.

        For the past six weeks, I have been the target of hate speech on the internet and in the press – including hate speech that accuses me, wrongly, of trying to censor those attacks. (This seems to be based on the removal of the post about me on kveller – an act that I had nothing to do with.)
        This experience challenges me to consider how committed I am to the right of free speech. I have been wounded and frightened by the hate speech directed against me; I have been outraged by the statements of revulsion against transgender people, and have worried what harm those statements might do to the well-being and safety of my fellow trans people.
        However, I continue to believe that the answer to hateful exercise of the right to free speech is more free speech. I am grateful and admiring of the many respectful critiques that have been posted and published in response to the hate speech directed against me – critiques that turned hate speech into opportunities for education on trans issues, public support of trans people, and calls for empathy and understanding on all sides.
        I have become even more committed to the free speech rights of those who have attacked me by seeing the rage occasioned by the removal of the post on kveller, and repeated expressions of the idea that some people are being stigmatized for their feelings by a repressive, aggressive culture of “political correctness.” Many people – probably most people – have some transphobic feelings; that doesn’t make them bad people, it makes them people. When I returned to teach at Yeshiva University, I was publicly attacked by some in the Orthodox Jewish world. However, those voices were matched and overmatched by voices calling for understanding, tolerance, hesed (lovingkindness) and respect for all human beings. Had the transphobic comments about me been censored, the comments calling for greater understanding would never have been made or published, and the Orthodox Jewish community would have lost an opportunity to think out loud about transgender issues, to hear about transgender people, to consider whether the feelings of discomfort my gender transition occasioned outweighed the core Jewish belief that all people, even those who seem strange to us, are created in God’s image, and should be treated with the respect due to their Creator.
        I suspect the coming weeks will see more hate speech directed my way; even if I am spared, other people, trans and non-trans, will be targeted by hate speech. I want to thank all of you who have supported me through this difficult time, and ask those who support and stand with me to bring good from evil by responding to hate speech with speech that is respectful of all, even those whose words do harm, and that uses language not to attack or even defend but to promote understanding, empathy, compassion, and the rights of all human beings.
        Thank you.
        Joy Ladin

  6. karmarad Says:

    Excellent and thoughtful comments above, thanks, and thanks for this posting, Gallus.

  7. GallusMag Says:

    If I was Christine Benvenuto’s agent, I would schedule a public reading in a metro market. Then I would anonymously post outraged messages calling for protest on all the trans sites until a huge protest was organized. I would have articles placed a week ahead about the “controversy”. I would call the news to cover the protest. In front of cameras, I would have Benvenuto arrive under police guard. I would use photos of the protest in the advertising and I would advertise the memoir as “controversial” when scheduling the next reading in the next metro area. Rinse and Repeat.

  8. Adrian Says:

    “Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.”

    Nah. Instead, let’s consider an African-American author writing a memoir about a former white spouse who started fetishizing the African-American experience to the point of claiming to be “Black inside, really, in my brain, my white skin is a birth defect I need to be rid of” (and “of course I’m not really privileged, it is YOU who are privileged because your outward appearance matches your inward concept of your race!”) and wearing blackface – only on outings to faraway towns at first, but soon every day, at home, leaving the grease paint in the bathroom where she is certain to see it, petitioning the DMV to issue him a new drivers’ license with him in full costume and the hair/eyes section edited accordingly. I mean, he just knew he was “really” African-American “inside” because certain kinds of music just spoke to him and he has that sense of natural rhythm, y’know? Plus he likes soul food. So it’s gotta be true. Why is she not going along???

    Imagine the African-American author speaking about how this transformation seemed appropriative and not being listened to, instead hearing only at every turn how “brave” it was for the spouse to come out as his “true self,” and how any complaints from her about cultural appropriation are themselves the true racism, because you know, she’s speaking out against an African-American person, only it’s not just racism, it’s worse because it’s “trans-racism,” so it’s got that extra oomph to it.

    I imagine the letters column would get pretty interesting.

  9. Em Says:

    Women, whether individually or as a group, are not allowed to express displeasure at male behavior. It’s that simple.

  10. radicalwoman Says:

    “Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.”

    Al;ways this – trans misappropriating racism to pretend that level of hate is somehow directed against them and play the “I’m a victim, pity me” card.

    Indeed, the problem is not that Benvenuto pretended the painful journey was only hers, but rather that “transitioning people” are so incredibly, grossly narCISsistic (lol) that they think their problem, their emotional pain, is more important than the pain of anyone around them, should take precedence over everyone else’s pain, that no matter how people around them are hurt by what they do it should be excused and forgiven and no one should ever express their hurt feelings or “You’re denying my identity wah!”

    I know people whose significant other has transitioned in the middle of their relationship – they are expected to be completely and utterly supportive from the get go, never to express their own hurt or needs, if they balk in the slightest they are transformed themselves into “horrible bigoted transphobe!” and never forgiven by anyone, ever. It’s appalling.

  11. alamia Says:

    Yes, Adrian,*that* is the perfect analogy.

  12. alamia Says:

    Adrian, you should post that comment on the gazettenet website.


  13. http://www.press-citizen.com/news You will be forever linked to Transgender if this policy is allowed to stand.


  14. My bad here is the link to the story http://blogs.press-citizen.com/2012/12/12/ui-makes-admissions-process-more-lgbt-friendly/
    You will be forever be seen as having a lesbian gender identity if this policy is allowed to stand. You might not support me but I’m not trying to define who you are or what are. I really hope you see the danger of Lesbian, Gay, bisexual, and transgender being legitimized as gender identities.

  15. Marie-France Lesage Says:

    “Personal hate, when made so public, is hate speech.”

    Let’s see, so when a white heterosexual male “trans woman” in drag tells me — a multi-racial bisexual female, a member of an oppressed class within patriarchy — to go “drink bleach” or “off yourself” or “die in a fire” then is that hate speech?

    Because I get that kind of violent “trans”-speak pretty much on a weekly basis — and I know for a fact that GallusMag — a lesbian blogger and our hostess here on GenderTrender — gets the same and worse.

    A woman ragging on her abusive ex-husband is pretty standard stuff in American culture these days. Anyone getting on their high horse about it is an idiot.

    A woman being horrified when her sexual partner — and the father of her children — starts putting on women’s undergarments and demanding that everyone believe he has ALWAYS BEEN a REAL woman? Making his wife what? A lesbian whether she feels that way or not? That would be VERY creepy to about 99% of heterosexual women with intact brain functioning. It’s one thing to actually be a lesbian, to want to be sexually and emotionally bonded with another woman. That’s beautiful and fine. It’s a completely OTHER thing to have some DUDE force it on you in retrospect just so your “identity” will match his new “identity”, his fetish for all things “feminine”.

    When did she get a vote on that? Or on her children suddenly having two mommies? Or on any of it?

    What Ladin has put her through is not merely creepy — it’s crazy.

  16. Marie-France Lesage Says:

    “Being transgender is neither a mid-life crisis (as described in the book), nor a mental illness, nor a choice for those who feel life unlivable in what feels to be the wrong gender.”

    Who the hell knows what it is? It shifts around on a weekly basis and has for decades.

    I think it’s a heady mix of OCD, sexual fetish (auto-gynephilia), brain defect very similar to body dysmorphic syndrome, self-hate, rage and possibly clinical depression with a big old dollop of SEXISM thrown in to make the mix more combustible:

    “I like lipstick; women like lipstick; I must really be a woman; I look better in lipstick than YOU do, chick; all your lipstick are belong to us.”

    • weirdward Says:

      lipstick liberated by the trans army, lol

    • Em Says:

      Mr. Ladin was likely not in the best of mental health when he began his heroic “journey.” Per Benvenuto’s book, their third child was born with serious health issues that persisted for at least a year. Benvenuto acknowledges that, as a result, she was suffering from a mild case of PTSD around the time that Ladin’s gender dysphoria became so compelling to him. Under the horrendous stresses of a seriously ill infant and a marriage that almost certainly wasn’t in great shape–a sick kid will do that to you–something had to give. What gave was whatever protections Ladin had against this species of crazy.

      There’s always a cause, and it ain’t biology.

      • Marie-France Lesage Says:

        Interesting theory. That’s very similar to the model I am hearing for a number of cancers and autoimmune diseases like T1 diabetes. The genetic weakness/tendency was always there, but some combination of triggers kicked it off: toxins, viruses, nutritional deficiencies, life stresses, etc.

        (This weakness + trigger thing is why I’m skeptical of the whole “run a marathon for cancer” meme. That level of training is VERY stressful to the immune system in healthy folks, much less in cancer survivors…but I digress.)

        My personal “trans woman” stalker had an immediate family member commit suicide in a very dramatic way. Perhaps that was his trigger?

  17. Becky Green Says:

    Spontaneous haiku:

    Big, burly woman
    strangely reminds me of dad
    her perfume, Old Spice?

  18. Lydia Says:

    I looked on the Gazettenet site to comment there, and found this comment from one of the Rabbis. He didn’t sign the letter!

    Rabbi David Seidenberg wrote:
    12/11/2012

    Though I am very glad that the signers of this op-ed want to stand up for people who are trans, I have to admit that I didn’t sign on to this article, and I don’t believe Rabbi Raquel Kosovske did either. Because both of us care about trans issues, we were each shown a copy of it before it was published, and there must have been some confusion about who was intending to sign it. The difficulty for me with signing is this: both Joy Ladin and Christine Benvenuto are part of the Jewish community. There’s a lot of pain in this kind of situation, and it should not be adjudicated in the press. Both of them need to be able to turn to the Jewish community for support. I don’t feel that as a rabbi I should be coming out for or against someone under such circumstances. The points made in this op-ed are powerful and important. But especially during Chanukah, I’d like us to ask ourselves whether our own words have lived up to the standards that the authors have articulated, rather than to focus on Benvenuto’s words.

    • weirdward Says:

      Interesting! That means that as anon male pointed out above, most of the co signers were college kiddies who are not exactly going to know any better, or necessarily be in a position to refuse their lecturers even if they want to.

      Dragging community leaders into this against their will, and making them appear to be choosing sides, seems a morally suspect course of action from people claiming to care so much about fairness and justice and so on.

      • Becky Green Says:

        Yeah, I found that very interesting too. Their entire PR campaign is built on a foundation of lies. Not surprising.

  19. cid Says:

    >>Consider a white author describing an African-American former spouse as, “creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold,” specifically because they were African-American.<<

    More like a white author describing a white former spouse now perpetually wearing blackface as, "creepy, dark, and disgusting to behold", specifically because they think they know what it's like to be black, and that IN FACT they are black *now* despite being white essentially their whole lives.

  20. Em Says:

    @Marie-France, 5:47 am:

    I really doubt that trans tendencies and triggers are physical or organic. True, we’re essentially meat, so everything we do ultimately comes from our bodies. But I think trans tendencies and triggers are psychological–a result of nurture rather than nature.

    I know, right? The evergreen nature/nurture debate!

    • Marie-France Lesage Says:

      Its a puzzler.

      If you dig under the surface, a lot of the “trans” body dysmorphic and body dysphoria stuff sound an awful lot like the way people with anorexia nervosa and garden-variety Body Dysmorphic Syndrome express themselves.

      If the whole political “trans” cult would just STFU we might be able to help people tease out WHY they feel so uncomfortable in their own skin, WHY they have this urge to cut off their perfectly healthy, anatomically appropriate breasts — or penis and testicles, WHY they look in the mirror and interpret their distress as “I was born in the wrong body” — a physiological impossibility.

      I’m sure that the issues are as complex and varying as the reasons human beings engage in any crazy, self-destructive, abusive behaviors.

      Why does a perfectly adorable, successful young movie star pay someone to butcher her “too Jewish” (not!!!) nose?

      Why do women inject collagen into their lips until they have a revolting case of “trout mouth”?

      Why do some men spend thousands on electrolysis and waxing to remove every, single hair from their bodies, pump themselves up with dangerous anabolic steroids and spend fifteen to twenty hours per week in punishing weight training routines?

      Who invented foot binding?! Or ten-inch platform “ankle breakers”? Or extreme tribal body modification?

      People do weird shit to their bodies all the time. They spout crazy all the time, too. I see the current “trans” cult in the great sweep of history and I am not feeling any urge to enable them. None.

      But I do feel compassion for their pain — even the pain of the ones who can’t seem to back up and get INCH of perspective on how their obsessions and demands are hurting everyone else, especially women and girls.

      • Beth Says:

        Exactly. Whereas the other things are seen as pressure placed by society (or in cases of eating disorders, some form of abuse) trans are apparently immune to this. It’s because of the limbic region of the brain and hormone washes in the uterus or because of unicorns of whatever. Nothing to do with being forced into stupid little boxes by other people….

      • Marie-France Lesage Says:

        Unicorns! Why didn’t I think of that?!

        ;0)

  21. EqualRightsAndProtection Says:

    Misuse of pronouns and stating your opinion is not hate speech. If it is, we’d better eliminate hate speech laws altogether since it chills free speech and shuts down dialogue. Hate speech is threats of violence directed at another due to some defined status.

    I finished her book. I don’t really see transphobic. I see a pig-headed spouse trying to force a redefined identity on the other members of the family. Reshaping your own identity –fine. Forcing others to reshape theirs because it fits your worldview –not fine. Getting upset and screaming at children because they are having trouble not accepting –super not fine.

    I’d have divorced her (Ladin) too. I wouldn’t have used the reason that she changed into a woman in the divorce though. I’d have used mental cruelty. But Benvenuto was trying for a no fault divorce.

    No wonder the trans community wants to shut the book down. This is not anti-trans as much as it exposes a mentally abusive spouse. The trans community is afraid that if the book becomes popular, then all trans will be seen as crazy.

    We all have a past history. Erasing and redefining your past history to fit your backstory can’t be forced on others who actually lived through events and have a different viewpoint. Benvenuto married a man. She lived with a man. She divorced a man.

  22. Dianne Says:

    It’s sad that two people who are so angry get so much traction ONLY BECAUSE there is a transgender story at the root. If the person who was a man was still living as a man no one would care at all! They would just be one of thousands of couples that grew apart. If the woman had come out as lesbian there would be no discussion in public forums and probably no book.

    The ending of any marriage is very sad. The end of this marriage is especially sad because it gives the media plenty of vivid paint to spread with it’s broad sensational brush.

    • GallusMag Says:

      Benvenuto is a memoirist, and her reflections on the dissolution of her marriage would have arguably found an audience regardless of specifics. That has certainly been the case in her writing career prior to this book.

      I do agree however that no one was the slightest bit interested in reading any of her ex-husband Jay Ladin’s crappy poetry, nor was anyone interested in profiling him or reading his memoirs before he used the whole transgender thing as a hook. I also think he has used the trans politic to harass and bully and silence his ex-wife, not because he is trans, but because he is a total average dick like so many men before him.

  23. GallusMag Says:

    Yet another trans blogger speaks out against Cerullo and Goodman’s Hampshire College bookburning campaign:

    “Joy Ladin and Christine Benvenuto were once an heterosexual couple. Following Jay’s transition and the breakup of their marriage, both have written an account of the events, and both have been published. The two books each reflect the differing perspectives of the two. For historians and lovers of literature this is fascinating, and one expects a future PhD thesis doing a close comparison of the two accounts. However the attempts to censor Benvenuto in her local paper and a public presentation, for the sin of not writing her own book from her ex-husband’s perspective, are reprehensible. Ironically they are counter-productive in that they will almost certainly increase the sales of Benvenuto’s book. Trans people have been censored for centuries. Increased censorship is not in our interest.”

    Read more: http://zagria.blogspot.com/2012/12/2012-and-other-things.html#ixzz2FHBh4UUV

  24. GallusMag Says:

    Ladin’s pal Margaret Cerullo made the Big Time!
    She made the list of the top “Nemeses” of the Transgender Community in 2012 on Gender Variance Who’s Who:

    http://zagria.blogspot.com/2012/12/some-events-of-year-2012-part-6schools.html

    “Margaret Cerullo, a professor at Hampshire College, Massachusetts who has never written a book, thinking to support one trans woman whom she knows, demanded the suppression of the trans woman’s wife’ book even though she has not read it. With friends like this we don’t need enemies.”

  25. GallusMag Says:

    Ladin on the same site:


  26. […] academic Jay (now “Joy”) Ladin. Transgender attorney and HuffPo columnist Dana Beyer, among other prominent individuals, personally campaigned for censorship of Christine Benvenuto’s work, even though they had not […]


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