The Genderless Eighteenth-Century Prophet

In 1776, a 24-year-old Quaker woman named Jemima Wilkinson died of fever, and came back to life as a prophet known as the Publick Universal Friend. By Livia Gershon Understanding gender as a spectrum is a part of life in twenty-first century America. But gender-nonconforming people have always existed. Historian Scott Larson takes a look[…]

Dardanella and Peter: What Does Microhistory Offer to the History of Sexuality?

During the past two decades, historians of twentieth-century Britain have delineated the landscape of a “modern sexual and gender regime.” What does a microhistorical approach, based upon the subjective experiences and writings of individuals, offer the history of sex and love in early twentieth-century Britain? This was the central question guiding research following the discovery,[…]

The Cinaedus: Transgender Soldiers in the Ancient Roman Army

An ancient Roman fable imagines a cinaedus, well-known for his brazen effeminacy, fighting heroically. Introduction On August 25, 2017, Donald Trump signed a directive banning transgender people from joining the U.S. military. This officially reverses the inclusive policies introduced during the Obama regime. Trump’s decision was, he claimed in earlier tweets, based on the burdensome medical costs and disruption that[…]

An Overview of the Study of Transgender History

From activist and academic roots, a field takes shape. By Dr. Kritika AgarwalManaging EditorPerspectives On HistoryAmerican Historical Association While in graduate school at the University of California, Berkeley, history department in the 1980s, Susan Stryker wrote a dissertation on the development of Mormon identity and community. Just as she was finishing up her PhD, she[…]