In presenting the daily struggles of a working-class transgendered person, a person who fits into neither prescribed gender category, Leslie Feinberg’s first novel, Stone Butch Blues (1993), exposes the quotidian practices through which fixed gendered and sexual identities are culturally constructed and systematically imposed. Stone Butch Blues chronicles preStonewall1 working-class transgendered and gay and lesbian life and struggles in the urban Northeast and the conflicts between those struggles and the women’s liberation movement. Feinberg employs narrative fiction to foreground the interrelationship of class structures and gender constraints. This essay examines the interrelationship of gendered identity development, socioeconomic structures, and resistance to oppression in Stone Butch Blues.
By Cat Moses, 1999