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Contesting intersex : the dubious diagnosis

Author: Georgiann Davis
Publisher: New York : New York University Press, [2015]
Series: Biopolitics (New York, N.Y.)
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"When Georgiann Davis was a teenager, her doctors discovered that she possessed XY chromosomes, marking her as intersex. Rather than share this information with her, they withheld the diagnosis in order to 'protect' her gender identity; it was years before Davis would see her own medical records as an adult and learn the truth"--Back cover.
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Genre/Form: History
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Georgiann Davis
ISBN: 9781479814152 1479814156 9781479887040 1479887048
OCLC Number: 905600230
Description: xii, 221 pages ; 24 cm.
Contents: 1. Introduction: "You're in the monkey cage with me" --
2. The transformation of intersex advocacy --
3. Medical jurisdiction and the intersex body --
4. The power in a name --
5. A different kind of information --
6. Conclusion: The dubious diagnosis --
Appendix A: Table of research participants --
Appendix B: Conference agenda.
Series Title: Biopolitics (New York, N.Y.)
Other Titles: Dubious diagnosis
Responsibility: Georgiann Davis.
More information:

Abstract:

"When Georgiann Davis was a teenager, her doctors discovered that she possessed XY chromosomes, marking her as intersex. Rather than share this information with her, they withheld the diagnosis in order to 'protect' her gender identity; it was years before Davis would see her own medical records as an adult and learn the truth"--Back cover.

"When sociologist Georgiann Davis was a teenager, her doctors discovered that she possessed XY chromosomes, marking her as intersex. Rather than share this information with her, they withheld the diagnosis in order to 'protect' the development of her gender identity; it was years before Davis would see her own medical records as an adult and learn the truth. Davis' experience is not unusual. Many intersex people feel isolated from one another and violated by medical practices that support conventional notions of the male/female sex binary which have historically led to secrecy and shame about being intersex. Yet, the rise of intersex activism and visibility in the US has called into question the practice of classifying intersex as an abnormality, rather than as a mere biological variation. This shift in thinking has the potential to transform entrenched intersex medical treatment. In Contesting Intersex, Davis draws on interviews with intersex people, their parents, and medical experts to explore the oft-questioned views on intersex in medical and activist communities, as well as the evolution of thought in regards to intersex visibility and transparency. She finds that framing intersex as an abnormality is harmful and can alter the course of one's life. In fact, controversy over this framing continues, as intersex has been renamed a 'disorder of sex development' throughout medicine. This happened, she suggests, as a means for doctors to reassert their authority over the intersex body in the face of increasing intersex activism in the 1990s and feminist critiques of intersex medical treatment. Davis argues the renaming of 'intersex' as a 'disorder of sex development' is strong evidence that the intersex diagnosis is dubious. Within the intersex community, though, disorder of sex development terminology is hotly disputed; some prefer not to use a term which pathologizes their bodies, while others prefer to think of intersex in scientific terms. Although terminology is currently a source of tension within the movement, Davis hopes intersex activists and their allies can come together to improve the lives of intersex people, their families, and future generations. However, for this to happen, the intersex diagnosis, as well as sex, gender, and sexuality, needs to be understood as socially constructed phenomena"--Publisher's description.

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"With refreshingly honest prose and an insider'sinsight, Georgiann Davis illuminates the ongoing, heated, and often painfuldebate about how best to respond to the naturally occurring diversity of Read more...

 
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