My Brother My Sister: A Story of a Transformation

Monday, September 09, 2013

Film critic Molly Haskell explores the controversial subject of gender reassignment and transsexuals from both a personal and a social perspective. Her book My Brother My Sister: A Story of a Transformation is about her own brother’s decision to become a woman and chronicles his transformation into Ellen through a series of psychological evaluations, grueling surgeries, drug regimens, and fashion lessons.


Molly Haskell

Comments [6]

rh from nyc

I am not one for mirrors, nor societal expectations of me based on my gender. I'm not sure why anyone else would care what parts they had and what their hair or face looks like. It's difficult for me to reconcile the need to "be me" with the need to "be the real me". Maybe the real me is a rich person, too bad I can't get surgery for that.

And "fashion lessons"? Really? Kind of sounds like those mothers with their sons who like pink, so the moms diagnose them as gender nonconforming. Because they like pink. Because people who are born male and like pink, of any age, are LGBTQ.

I would dare any woman to be as fabulous as Liberace.

Sep. 11 2013 12:40 AM
Keira from Manhattan

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Being a movie critic with a trans sibling does not an expert make. This interview is truly cringe inducing on just about every level.

Sep. 09 2013 06:16 PM
Kate from Washington Heights

Hi Leonard - A distinction I've learned which I haven't heard you and your guest make clear is the distinction between:

Gender identity - which is about whether one "feels" female or male - ie, what you *are* in terms of gender

Sexual orientation - which is about which gender is more desirable to you as a partner - ie, who *attracts* you

These two things are actually unrelated, except that they both have to do with gender. But just because I'm heterosexual, doesn't mean I feel like a woman, for instance.

Sep. 09 2013 01:30 PM
Amy from Manhattan

I'm trying to understand Ms. Haskell's use of "fantasy" w/regard to (I think) her brother's/sister's identity. Does she mean it was a fantasy when she was a man & is a reality now?

Sep. 09 2013 01:28 PM
Martin from Brooklyn

Molly it would be better if you differentiate between transsexual and transgender. Gender identity and sexual preference are not the same thing. The use of 'transsexual' as a catchall word conflates the two things and is generally not used in the young transgender community.

Sep. 09 2013 01:16 PM
Anonymous from New York

Why Marry at all?

Sep. 09 2013 01:14 PM

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