into the publication of
J. Michael Bailey's
book on transsexualism
by the National Academies:
DIRECT QUOTES FROM BAILEY'S BOOK
by Lynn Conway
2004 by Lynn Conway
12-02-06] [Link to
printable PDF file]
- We include here some quotes from the book The
Man Who Would Be Queen; The science of gender-bending and transsexualism
by J. Michael Bailey, in order to give site-readers a quick way
to visualize why this investigation was undertaken - by seeing and judging
for yourselves what Prof. Bailey was teaching the public on the
topic of transsexual women. In all cases, we provide direct links
to the relevant pages in the book, so that you can read the quotes in
context and fully confirm their strangeness for yourself.
- Most people who have any knowledge about transsexualism and/or
who actually know trans people will find these teachings to be
incredibly defamatory of trans women. How this book could have
been published under the imprimatur of the National Academy Press,
and be called "cutting-edge science" by the National
Academies, are key questions that we are still investigating.
- In the direct quotes below from the National Academy Press
website and promotional materials, you will find striking claims
by the Academies regarding the scientific quality of Bailey's
book. However, as you will learn in our reports, our investigation
revealed that these claims are not backed up in any
way by actual research results.
- As you will learn, Bailey's book denies the reality of cross-gender
identities and classifies trans women as males. Therefore, it is
no surprise that not only Bailey's book but also the Academies'
promotional materials contain frequent references to trans women
as "males" and "men" (underlined in the quotes
below). Such continual references to trans women as "men"
go completely counter to current-day clinical practices and social
conventions, and are universally perceived by trans women to
be a deliberate form of hate speech. Thus this new product of
the National Academies is not only a classic case of junk science,
but in its subtext is a
form of hate speech:
- National Academy Press claims
regarding the scientific quality of Bailey's
- "Based on his original research, Baileys book
is grounded firmly in science."
- "Bailey skillfully interweaves vivid case studies
with cutting-edge scientific findings, placing both in a deep
historical context - - - Refreshingly candid, remarkably free
of ideology, this book is destined to become a modern classic
in the field."
- "He has studied feminine men in the industrialized
world as well as those in the developing world who either are
feminine or who perform ritualistic "feminine" sexual
behavior that may shock the average reader."
- "The conclusions to which Bailey came after years
of psychological profiles, statistical studies, interviews, and
comparison of his research with that fellow scientists, may not
always be politically correct, but they are scientifically accurate,
thoroughly researched, and occasionally startling."
- "Bailey is one of a rare breed of writers who manages
to combine first-rate science with deep psychological understanding,
resulting in great breadth of vision. He takes us on an unforgettable
journey into the minds and lives of feminine men."
- "...the first scientifically grounded book about
male femininities written for a general audience...Bailey
sympathetically portrays these peoples' experiences and explores
the roots of their development.
Bailey's respect for the
people he describes serves as a role model for others who still
struggle to accept and appreciate homosexuality and transsexuality
- "J Michael Baileys The Man Who Would Be Queen
is an engaging book on the science of sexual orientation. ...highly
sympathetic to gay and transsexual men..."
Direct quotes from Bailey's book:
- Following are many quotes from the book itself that illustrate Bailey's
so-called "cutting-edge scientific findings". Note that he genders
trans women as "men", and then classifies them by whether
they are attracted to men (calling them 'homosexual' as if they
themselves were men) or attracted to women (calling them 'autogynephilic'
and defining that condition to be an autosexual paraphilia -
while ignoring their lesbian orientation).
- In the process of force-fitting all trans women into these
two caricature-like categories, Mr. Bailey ignored any discussion
of gendered inner feelings and gender identities. Any sensible person,
especially those who know any trans women, will see that these
statements are outrageously inaccurate and are defamatory caricatures
of trans women's lives, loves and gender identities:
1. Boys suffering
from transsexualism should give up the dream of becoming women and grow up to be
happy as gay men
2. There are "two
types of transsexual men"
The first type, sometimes called classic
transsexuals, are "homosexual transsexual men"
All other transsexuals are "sexually paraphilic
5. All other
(non-transsexual) transgender people are also autogynephiles"; i.e., they
are all mentally-ill sexual paraphilics too.
6. Comments condescendingly on other researchers who
don't see things his way
7. Eugenics solutions to the "evolutionary paradox"
8. Challenges concept of
innate gender identity, and instead
proclaims that the motivation to "change sex" is a result of disordered
9. Hopes teachings lead
to renewed pathologization
of transsexualism by inclusion in new APA Diagnostic and Statistical
Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).
- 1. Bailey teaches that transsexual women are actually "men",
and the underlying theme of the book is that boys suffering from
transsexualism should be counseled to give up the dream of becoming
women and instead grow up to be happy as gay men, as does "Danny"
(the main character in the book):
- "The Man Who Would Be Queen: The Science of
Gender-Bending And Transsexualism"
title of the book
- The book's cover contains a deliberately gross photo of a
man's gnarly, muscular, hairy legs in high heels, as if these
are a typical "transsexual man's" legs.
- "Are all male transsexuals women trapped in
men's bodies ... ?" inside front cover sheet
- "Supposedly, male-to-female transsexuals are motivated
by the deep-seated feeling that they have women's souls. However,
- - - men who want to be women are not naturally feminine.
There is no sense in which they have women's souls"
- " - - - he recalls the parents of a boy with GID
telling him: "Every night before going to bed, he prays
to God to turn him into a girl." ... Zucker thinks
that an important goal of treatment is to help the children accept
their birth sex and to avoid becoming transsexual."
- "Failure to intervene increases the chances of transsexualism
in adulthood, which Zucker considers a bad outcome. ... Why put
boys at risk for this when they can become gay men happy to be
- "Imagine that we could create a world in which very
feminine boys were not persecuted by other children and their
parents allowed them to play however they wanted ... As much
as I would like to arrange such a world, I think that it might
well come at the cost of more transsexual adults."
- 2. Bailey then teaches that there are "two types of
- "The two types of transsexuals who begin life as
males are called homosexual and autogynephilic ... homosexual
transsexuals are extremely feminine gay men, and autogynephilic
transsexuals are men erotically obsessed with the image
of themselves as women."
- "The most important reason that most people do not
realize that there are two types of transsexuals is that members
of one type sometime misrepresent themselves as members of the
other. ... they are often silent about their true motivation
and instead tell stories about themselves that are misleading
and, in important respects, false."
- "Once you've learned about autogynephilic and homosexual
transsexuals and seen several of each, distinguishing them is
- "The current popular literature about transsexualism
is noteworthy for its ignorance of the distinction between autogynephilic
and homosexual transsexuals."
- 3. Bailey then teaches that the first type (those who are
attracted to men) are actually "homosexual
transsexual men" - and he then caricatures these trans women
- " - - - one type of transsexual man is a kind
of homosexual man."
- "To be sure, only a small minority of gay men become
transsexual, but homosexual transsexuals are a type of gay man".
- "In order for a feminine boy to become transsexual,
something extra must happen. What is the something extra? - -
- Zucker found several predictors of adolescent GID: lower IQ,
lower social class, immigrant status, non-intact family, and
childhood behavior problems unrelated to gender identity disorder."
- " - - - homosexual transsexuals are used to living
on the margins of society"
- "Homosexual transsexuals tend to have a short time
horizon, with certain pleasure in the present worth great risks
for the future."
- "Prostitution is the single most common occupation
that homosexual transsexuals in our study admitted to."
- "The more resourceful and attractive transsexual
prostitutes are call girls."
- "Nearly all the homosexual transsexuals I know work
as escorts after they have their surgery."
- "As for shoplifting, homosexual transsexuals are
not especially well suited as much as especially motivated. For
many, their taste in clothing is much more expensive than their
- "Do they get married? ... homosexual transsexuals
are not very successful at finding desirable men willing to commit
- "When I began writing this book, I had never known
a homosexual transsexual who married."
- "They wanted to get their surgery (if they had not
had it yet) and meet a nice, attractive, and financially stable
heterosexual man who would marry them and take care of them ...
When I was conducting my study of homosexual transsexuals, I
routinely asked them if they knew anyone who had realized this
dream. No one did."
- "Many of the transsexuals we interviewed in the course
of this study were more attractive than the average genetic female."
- "Gay transsexuals are boy crazy."
- " - - - her ability to enjoy emotionally meaningless
sex appears male-typical. In this sense, homosexual transsexuals
might be especially well-suited to prostitution."
- "When I have discussed the theory that homosexual
transsexuals are a type of gay man, I have met resistance.
I was surprised at this, for the idea is neither new nor, it
seemed to me, controversial."
- 4. Bailey then teaches that all other transsexuals (i.e.,
those who are lesbian in orientation) are actually "sexually paraphilic men":
- "Autogynephilic transsexuals are not "women
in men's bodies" (Anne Lawrence, a physician and sex researcher
who is herself a postoperative transsexual, has called them "men
trapped in men's bodies")."
- "The autogynephile's main romantic target is herself."
- "Most gender patients lie - - - "
- "The most common way that autogynephiles mislead
others is by denying the erotic component of their gender bending."
- " - - - autogynephilia seems to be a type of paraphilia.
Paraphilias comprise a set of unusual sexual preferences that
include autogynephilia, masochism, sadism ,... , frotteurism
, ... necrophilia, beastiality, and pedophilia."
- "If a man has one paraphilia, then his chances
of having any other paraphilia seem to be highly elevated.
- "The best established link is between autogynephilia
and masochism. There is a dangerous masochistic practice called
"autoerotic asphyxia," in which a man strangles himself,
usually by hanging, for sexual reasons. ... About one-fourth
of the time, these men are found wearing some article of women's
clothing, such as panties. ...Apparantly these men are both masochistic
- "Cross-dressing has also been linked to sexual sadism
- although most autogynephiles are not sexual sadists, they are
more likely to be sadists compared with men who are not
- "Paraphilias tend to seem bizarre to typical gay
and straight people, whose sexual desires are primarily directed
toward conventional sex acts with adults."
He then says his students are
to support surgery for nonhomosexual transsexuals - - - When
I press them they say - - - 'But they dont have the wrong
body, they are mentally ill'. "
5. But what about all
the other (non-transsexual) transgender people out there? What
does Bailey say about them? He is merciless on this point:
According to Bailey"They are all autogynephiles";
other words they are all mentally-ill sexual paraphilics:
"Today, public statements by those who call themselves
"transgendered" (who are almost all autogynephiles
rather than homosexual transsexuals) rarely acknowledge any erotic
component of "transgenderism". "
"According to Blanchard, even cross-dressers who
do not want to change their sex have autogynephilia, which they
share with non-homosexual transsexuals - - - it is impossible
to distinguish males who will become non-homosexual transsexuals
from those who will remain crossdressers. They are all autogynephiles."
6. Bailey then comments condescendingly on other researchers who
don't see things his way:
For example, consider his remarks about gender counselors:
" - - - many experts who make their livings
working with them do not understand transsexuals very well."
And then consider his remarks about his fellow sex researchers:
"Blanchard's ideas have not yet received the widespread
attention they deserve, in large part because sex researchers
are not as scholarly as they should be and so dont read
the current scientific journals."
7. Bailey also wades into eugenics solutions to the "evolutionary
paradox" of homosexuality:
"...gay men have penises, even
though they don't use them for the purpose for which penises evolved,
namely, procreation." p.88
- "What would make avoiding gay children wrong?"
- "For example, some of the people raising the spector
of "murdering gay babies" were the same people who
insisted that abortion is no one's business but the woman's..."
- "Instead, the real question is whether parental selection
in favor of heterosexuality is acceptable. To focus on this question,
we have to assume that whatever means parents will use to do
this are, in themselves, morally acceptable"
- "So the next question is whether selecting for heterosexual
children would cause any harm?" Certainly being straight
rather than gay doesn't harm the child itself."
- "Homosexuality might be the most striking unresolved
paradox of human evolution.
- "Homosexuality is evolutionary maladaptive."
- "'Evolutionary maladaptive' sounds like an insult,
but it isn't."
- "The desire to have sex with members of the opposite
sex helps people have sex that might result in offspring. The
number of healthy offspring one leaves if perhaps the best indicator
of evolutionary success."
- 8. Bailey then challenges the current-day view that transsexuals
suffer from an innate gender identity dysphoria (GID), and instead
proclaims that there motivation to "change sex" is
a result of unusual (disordered) sexual drives:
- "The standard transsexual narrative says that transsexualism
is not about sex but about "gender identity", or the
internal sense that one is a man or a woman. According to this
narrative, transsexuals want to change sex because their sense
of self diagrees with their bodies, not because they have any
unusual sexual preferences that depend on a sex change. ... It
should be clear by now that the "gender, not sex" part
of the transsexual narrative is false - - - "
- Bailey hopes his teachings will lead to a new pathologizing
of transsexualism by the inclusion of these teachings in the
American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical
Manual of Mental Disorders:
- "With luck, the next revision of the DSM will distinguish
between "homosexual" and "autogynephilic"
After reading these quotes, few people believe the book
to be cutting edge science, as claimed by the National
Academies. Instead, many see it as trans women do, namely as hate science full of simmering hate-speech within the subtext of a book
designed to be "controversial" - and designed to sell well - to a public presumed
by Bailey and the National Academies to be eager
to learn prurient details about transsexualism.
- Perhaps you'll sense as many do that this book was written
by a man who has a serious axe to grind against trans women and
against "sex changes". If you have any doubts about
this, please read the entire book for yourself (you
can read it online) ...
- On further study, you'll find that the book is
designed to play upon one of the greatest fears parents have
nowadays, namely that a feminine son might someday 'want to become
a woman' (God forbid - what would the neighbors think!). The
book reassures parents not to worry - that with proper counseling
by psychological experts such as Bailey, their boy can give up that dream and grow up to become a gay man instead.
- That story is embedded in the book as the
story of "Danny", an effeminate boy who is finally
'saved' by early counseling from what Bailey portrays as the
ghastly fate of becoming "a transsexual". Transsexual life is stigmatized in the
book by teachings that transsexuals
are either (i) homosexual men who end up as sex-changed street
prostitutes with no chance of ever finding a mate - or that they
are (ii) paraphilic autosexual men who are sexually obsessed
with their sex-changed bodies, who are ugly and unpassable as
women, and who undoubtedly engage in a whole range of paraphilic
- The book appears designed as a classic for our modern liberal age:
Bailey senses that many of today's parents are ready to accept a son who is
gay. However they are not ready for the alternative that the boy might want
to be a girl, and thus end up becoming a "transsexual". Bailey
apparently hoped his book would become a mainstream sex book - via his lionizing
of the happy gay life at the expense of luridly caricatures and
stigmatizations of trans women.
- But guess what? Our investigation revealed that Danny's story is largely fabricated...fabricated for
its literary effect in supporting this book's main theme! Mr. Bailey admitted to Anjelica Kieltyka that
invented the ending of his book in which Danny gives up the
dream of becoming a girl and proudly goes on to become a (gay)
- Now is that "science", or what?
This page is part of Lynn
Conway's "Investigation into the publication ofJ. Michael Bailey's book on transsexualism
by the National Academies"