Book Launch–Sex Is as Sex Does: Governing Transgender Identity, June 10, 2022

Join us for the launch of Sex Is as Sex Does: Governing Transgender Identity. Author Paisley Currah will be joined by Kendall Thomas, the Nash Professor of Law and the Director of the Studio for Law and Culture at Columbia University, for a discussion of the book. Every government agency in the United States, from Homeland Security to Departments of Motor Vehicles, has the authority to make its own rules for sex classification. Many transgender people find themselves in the bizarre situation of having different sex classifications on different documents. Whether you can change your legal sex to “F” or “M” (or more recently “X”) depends on what state you live in, what jurisdiction you were born in, and what government agency you’re dealing with. In Sex Is as Sex Does, noted transgender advocate and scholar Paisley Currah explores this deeply flawed system, showing why it fails transgender and non-binary people.

Sex Is as Sex Does: Governing Transgender Identity (New York University Press, 2022, hardcover, $28) is available for purchase from our online store:!/Sex-Is-as-Sex-Does-Governing-Transgender-Identity-Paisley-Currah/p/465857283/category=0

Sex Is as Sex Does is also available for purchase at the Bureau’s physical store.

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Paisley Currah is a Professor of Political Science and Women’s & Gender Studies at Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Currah has written widely on transgender issues, including on topics such as discrimination, sex reclassification, and the transgender rights movement. He is the co-founder of the leading journal in transgender studies, TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly. Currah has advocated for transgender rights at all levels of government. He was a founding board member of the Transgender Law and Policy Institute, served on the founding board of directors of Global Action for Trans Equality, and sat on the advisory board of Human Rights Watch’s LGBT Program.

Kendall Thomas is the Nash Professor of Law and the Director of the Studio for Law and Culture at Columbia University, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1984. He teaches and writes about law and culture, gender, sexuality and law, and critical race theory. He is a co-editor of Critical Race Theory: Key Writings that Founded the Movement (New Press, 1995). A scholar-activist, Thomas is a co-founder of Amend the 13th, a social justice literacy initiative allied with the movement to amend the 13th Amendment and end enforced prison labor. Thomas is also a vocalist who has performed in several solo shows at Joe’s Pub at the New York Public Theater and at MoMA PS 1 (the New York Museum of Modern Art).
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