Classification: News

: 4 June 1998

Journal of Psychology & Human Sexuality and Nature
(book review)

1. Journal of Psychology & Human Sexuality

Meyer-Bahlburg, Heino. (1998). Gender assignment in intersexuality. Journal
of Psychology

and Human Sexuality, 10(2), 1-21.

Abstract: The prevalent policy of assignment of gender to children born
with ambiguous genitalia has recently been questioned from both biological
and social-constructionist perspectives. This paper comments on the debate
from the perspective of the clinician involved in the psychosocial management
of intersexuality. It argues for only minor changes of the policy until
a more extensive

data base is available that permits a firmly grounded revision.

Article copies available for a fee from The Haworth Document Delivery
Service, 800-342-9678,

An earlier draft of this paper was presented by the author at a meeting
of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, San Francisco, 1995.
That meeting was reported in "Sexual Scientists

Question Treatment" in ISNA's newsletter Hermaphrodites with Attitude.


2. Nature (book review)

Porter, Roy. (1998). Body of evidence. Nature, 339, 323.

"Ignore the somewhat trendy title, which might seem to threaten
yet another piece of pretentious postmodernism. This is a well-researched,
sober history of a problem that Alice Dreger shows has directly affected
more people than we might think and which shapes the sense of sexual identity

us all."

"Avoiding preachy judgmentalism, Dreger shows us how deeply ingrained
are our assumptions about gender normality (sexual anatomy is destiny),
and on how flimsy a basis they have been grounded. The book offers us all
a lesson in self-awareness."

Roy Porter is at the Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine,
in London.

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