Honor to Us All: What Trans Men Gained and Lost in Mulan (2020)

My parents took me to see Mulan for my ninth birthday. Appropriately for someone raised as a girl, they bought me a Mulan doll that featured prominently in my playtime (as I’ve written before, I could never honestly tell my gender therapist that I hated dolls). Later, “I’ll Make a Man Out of You” became… Read more →

Signing for Life: Deaf Gay Activists Navigate the AIDS Epidemic, 1986–1991

Before a small crowd of journalists at San Diego’s Point Loma Hospital, through sign language and their interpreters, John Canady’s partner J.T. Tupper, and sister, Mary Noble, recounted the ordeal their loved one endured prior to his dying of AIDS at the age of 37.[1] On March 18, 1986, Canady, a deaf postal worker, had… Read more →

Nursing for Generations: Kiowa Peoplehood in the Work of Laura Pedrick

When smallpox erupted across the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache Reservation in 1900, local people began to panic. Experienced Kiowa and Comanche healers knew smallpox as a Western disease that usually required Western treatment. Rocky plains made difficult passage for the horse-drawn buggies that Charles Hume and Harry Wheeler, the reservation’s two government physicians, used to… Read more →

Sunday Morning Medicine

A weekly check-up of gender, medicine, and history in the news Defunding the (drug) police. The literary life of Octavia E. Butler. The last children of Down syndrome. The quiet history of lesbian pulp fiction. The early modern precursor to turducken. Our long-running love affair with pigeons. The peculiar role of America’s First Ladies. How… Read more →

Susie Walking Bear Yellowtail and Histories of Native American Nursing

I first encountered Susie Yellowtail (Crow) in a July 1934 letter in which a physician on her reservation condemned her for making “selfish” requests on health workers’ time and resources.1 The physician was angry that Yellowtail refused to accept hospital services for the birth of her child, and he made it clear that the Crow… Read more →

Food Media, Gender, and Power: An Interview with Emily Contois

Emily J. H. Contois has been researching masculinity in American diet culture for over a decade. During that time, the rise of social media, a devastating economic recession, and an unprecedented fixation on food combined to radically transform two enduring national obsessions: hegemonic masculinity and our fear of fat. In Diners, Dudes, and Diets: How… Read more →

Diners, Dudes, and Diets

It took me six months to dream up the title Diners, Dudes, and Diets (University of North Carolina Press, 2020). For anyone who’s ever watched Guy Fieri’s show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, my inspiration is likely pretty clear. As I researched gender and power in contemporary American food media, I spent years analyzing Fieri’s polarizing… Read more →

Sunday Morning Medicine

A weekly check-up of gender, medicine, and history in the news London’s mudlarks. Finding Afro-Mexico. The history of nachos. Alexander Hamilton, enslaver? The long history of cottagecore. When Christmas was cancelled. Divers are salvaging Black history. Remembering the Ocoee massacre. The gay history of Britain’s WWI poets. A new, feminist translation of Beowulf. A brief… Read more →

Rethinking Women, Gender, and War: A Feminist Approach

These four pathbreaking essays provide new insights into the role of women and war in military history. They pay particular attention to the impact of gendered assumptions on military practices and institutions in various sites and times around the world. Natalie Shibley highlights the difficulties women have fitting into the military, whether dealing with inappropriate… Read more →

It Just Wasn’t a Good Fit

Charity Adams Earley’s winter coat didn’t fit. At the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps Training Center in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1942, women had been issued winter overcoats designed for enlisted men. Earley’s coat was too short in the arms, but many other Army women found their coats too large. And, although Earley was training to… Read more →