What to Read When the President Withdraws Protections for Transgender Students


On Wednesday, the President overturned an Obama-era directive that gave transgender students the right to use the bathroom of their choice, to participate in school sports, access to single-sex facilities like lockers rooms, and more. Apparently, “making America great again” means undercutting the rights of the most vulnerable members of our society. It’s a move motivated by fear and ignorance, and one that must be fought through understanding.

What follows is a list of seventeen writers who illuminate issues of gender and sexuality and who make our world larger through their powerful stories and writing. This list is, of course, incomplete. Please add your favorite trans writers in the comments. We also hope you’ll consider sharing this list, and the books on it, with your friends and family.


I’m Looking Through You: Growing Up Haunted: A Memoir by Jenny Boylan


The Dream of Doctor Bantam by Jeanne Thornton


Hold Me Gorilla Monsoon by Collette Arrand


Some Assembly Required: The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen by Arin Andrews


The Masker by Torrey Peters


The Collection: Short Fiction from the Transgender Vanguard (Lambda Literary Award: Transgender) edited by Tom Leger and Riley McLeod


A Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett


Hello Cruel World: 101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws by Kate Borenstein


Nevada by Imogene Binnie


Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness and Becoming a Man (City Lights/Sister Spit) by Thomas Page McBee


All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders


Trans Liberation: Beyond Pink or Blue by Leslie Feinberg


Other trans writers you should be reading:

Katherine Cross has written for Bitch Media and Feministing. Cross describes herself as a sociologist, feminist, political writer, and trans Morticia Addams.

Sarah Nyberg has done a lot of work around online harassment and even made a Twitter bot that tricks trolls into arguments.

Gabby Bellot is a staff writer for Lit Hub and has written amazing work all over the Internet.

Alok Vaid-Menon is a nonbinary transfeminine writer and entertainer.

Meredith Talusan writes on minority and transgender issues for BuzzFeed and many other fantastic publications.