Gender identity Beyond pronouns and bathrooms

Maria Cook

Book - 2019

"An informative and project-filled book for middle graders to explore the meaning and history behind LGBTQ rights movements, including biographies of key figures in gender and gay/lesbian history, the context behind today's transgender "bathroom wars" and dozens of activities and research ideas for perspectives and further learning."

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Instructional and educational works
Illustrated works
Young adult nonfiction
White River Junction, VT : Nomad Press [2019]
Main Author
Maria Cook (author)
Other Authors
Alexis Cornell (illustrator)
Physical Description
ix, 118 pages : color illustrations ; 26 cm
Includes bibliographical references (pages 112-114) and index.
  • Timeline
  • Important People
  • Introduction: What Is Gender Identity?
  • Chapter 1. Early Gender Pioneers
  • Chapter 2. The Birth of a Movement
  • Chapter 3. Challenges and Changes
  • Chapter 4. Violence and Progress in the 1990s
  • Chapter 5. A New Century of Connection
  • Chapter 6. Gender Identity in Poplar Media
  • Chapter 7. The "New" Revolution
  • Glossary
  • Resources
  • Index
Review by Booklist Review

Covering a broader time period than the name suggests, the Inquire & Investigate Social Issues of the Twentieth Century series (4 titles) offers facts, historical perspective, and useful suggestions for young people studying key issues in America today. The writers encourage further study and thoughtful consideration of their books' subjects, which have all seen shifts in political rhetoric and public perception over time. Besides presenting each topic, they challenge readers to engage in critical thinking and consider questions from various people's points of view. The illustrations include many photos as well as cartoons. The books' large format accommodates a good deal of information in the very readable main texts, while side margins carry related pictures, vocabulary features, and brief introductions to noteworthy figures and events. Gender Identity provides a chronological narrative, providing the history of relevant issues, individuals' stories, lawsuits, and social changes over the last century. Well organized information and practical help for students researching significant social issues.--Carolyn Phelan Copyright 2019 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

This addition to the Inquire & Investigate series provides an interactive exploration of gender identity, gendered societal expectations, and LGBTQ rights. Sections explore gender expression in media and place changing views within the broader context of social history. They also name significant events, figures, and legislation pivotal to the LGBTQ movement from the 1930s onward. Cornell's comic panels feature characters expressing affirming perspectives on gender identity, while Cook provides vocabulary relating to expression, questions for readers to consider, and suggestions for further investigation. A thought-provoking resource. Ages 12-15. (Apr.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 7--10--Cook seeks to answer the question of what gender identity is and introduce readers to the people and places of the LGBTQ movement. The format includes color blocks, images, and comics. Additionally, reader comprehension is aided through discussion starters and research questions at the end of each chapter. Throughout the pages, there are sidebars with vocabulary, QR codes to primary sources, and extra tidbits of useful information. Cook places an emphasis on inquiry from page one, by explaining primary sources and source notes. Sadly, that emphasis does not continue throughout the book. While information regarding the history of the LGBTQ community is supplemented with sources, many factual statements regarding the scientific understanding of sex and gender are offered with no sources or studies. For example, in a section describing the practice of assigning gender, Cook writes, "We now know, however, that physical sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation are independent of one another." However, she never explains how we know this information. Also troubling is the list of sources at the back of the book that fails to include proper citations, only URLs. Many of the sites included on the list would not pass muster for a scholarly paper. VERDICT While Gender Identity attempts to explore the history and experiences of transgender and nonbinary people, this text falls short as a well-rounded source for student research assignments.--Cathy DeCampli, Haddonfield Public Library NJ

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