Intersex and Identity: The Contested Self

Redefining Sex

In Intersex and Identity: The Contested Self, sociologist Sharon Preves explores how people with intersex conditions experience and cope with being labeled sexual deviants in a society that demands sexual conformity. By demonstrating how intersexed people manage and create their own identities, often in conflict with their medical diagnosis, Preves shows that medical intervention into intersexuality often creates, rather than mitigates, the stigma these people suffer.

Listen to what some important folks are saying about the book:

"With sensitivity and solid critical analysis, Intersex and Identity brings to the fore the long-ignored voices of people with intersex conditions. This is an important and accessible book for all, including "patients," parents, clinicians, activists, scholars, and novice students."

  • Cheryl Chase, Founding Director of ISNA

"In Intersex and Identity Preves has produced the most up-to-date, comprehensive account available of what it is like to grow up and live with a body that isn't simply male or female. This work is compassionate, intelligent, and beautifully written, and promises to be well read and highly valued."

  • Alice Dreger, ISNA Board Member and author of Hermaphrodites and the Medical Invention of Sex

"Sharon Preves' analysis of her interviews with adult intersexuals illuminates the power of the coming out process in transforming stigma into pride. This book is an invaluable resource in the ongoing discourse on the clinical management of intersexuality."

  • Walter Bockting, assistant professor, Program in Human Sexuality, University of Minnesota Medical School

Preves, Sharon. 2003. Intersex and Identity: The Contested Self. Rutgers University Press.

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