Gender: A Wider Lens
Gender: A Wider Lens
9 - The Politicization of Gender

9 - The Politicization of Gender


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How and when did gender become such a heightened political issue? And what are the psychological implications for individuals and the collective? The origins of feminism, the LBG liberation movement, and the emerging transgender movement are explored within a psychological and cultural framework



Beauvoir, Simone de (2009) [1949]. The Second Sex. Trans. Constance Borde and Sheila Malovany-Chevallier. Random House. Simone de Beauvoir wrote that "the first time we see a woman take up her pen in defense of her sex" was Christine de Pizan in Epitre au Dieu d'Amour (Epistle to the God of Love) in the 15th century.  

Friedan, Betty (1963). The Feminine Mystique. W.W.Norton & Company. 

French, Marilyn (1977) The Women’s Room. Simon & Schuster 

Stryker, Susan (2009-01-07). Transgender History. Da Capo Press  

Bailey, Michael (2003). The Man Who Would Be Queen: The Science of Gender Bending and Transsexualism. Joseph Henry Press 

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental 

 disorders (5th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press. 


10 reasons american politics are so divided: 

Conversion therapy bans: 

Tumblr: A Call Out Post: 

The Controversy Surrounding the Man Who Would Be Queen (Michael Bailey’s book): 


Suffragette (2015) 


Julie Bindel, 2004 article in the Guardian:  

Kimberly Nixon and the Vancouver Rape Relief Centre: Rupp, Shannon (February 3, 2007). "Transsexual Loses Fight with Women's Shelter". The Tyee:  

Michigan Womyn's Music Festival:  

Ken Zucker:  

Michael Bailey:  

The DSM, gender dysphoria, Ray Blanchard:  

WPATH, Standards of Care, Version 7, Coleman et al., (2012), 

World Health Organization. (2018). ‘International Classification of Diseases: Gender  

incongruence (ICD-11)’. Available at:  

Griffin, L. & Clyde, K. (2019). Challenging Stigma in Sexuality and Gender. World  


We note that ICD-11 has dropped gender dysphoria from its chapter on mental and behavioural disorders, and moved it to the chapter on sexual health. What then, is the exact nature of this sexual health disorder? Are children necessarily prescribed puberty blockers and cross sex hormones because they suffer from a sexual health issue?’ 

Extended Notes

  • Those who don’t study history are condemned to repeat it.

  • Stella fills us in on some early feminist history.

  • People were willing to die over their political beliefs. It started out peacefully but it leads them nowhere.

  • The radical extremist is problematic, but it’s sometimes desperately needed.

  • What is political lesbianism? Sasha read that “every time a man and a woman have sex it is rape.”

  • The public’s perception of black women vs. white women.

  • Intersectionality needs more credit.

  • Radical feminists are being dismissed, but they’re making absolutely valid points.

  • How did the push for LGBT rights get started?

  • How did the “T” come into the LGBT movement?

  • Sasha makes a point on how the language around trans men and women has changed from the mid-’90s to now.

  • Why is American politics so divided right now? Sasha weighs in.

  • How we vote and what policies we agree with are not based on rational thinking.

  • The 24/7 news cycle is not helping anybody.

  • Stella and Sasha share the differences in news cycles/media in their respective countries.

  • The CDC in America has strict guidelines on how to not make suicide seem glamorous to those at risk.

  • Domestic violence shelters are often under strict orders to not reveal their location or to never allow men on the location because abusers will go to far lengths to find their victim and kill them.

  • Even though most people are good people, you have the outliers and it becomes a case of “one bad apple spoils the bunch.”

  • When something becomes so politicized and there is a control on “correct” language, you are forbidden to talk about what’s really happening.

  • Stella breaks down the different terms prior to it being called gender dysphoria.

  • Sasha feels like there is a political agenda/undertone that makes it difficult to get real work done.

  • Let’s talk about the psychological impacts of shame.

  • Can dogs be transphobic?

  • What is sex health in the eyes of a three-year-old? Should you be providing puberty blockers to children so young?

  • Although Stella believed she should have been a boy throughout her early days, she is so incredibly proud she is a woman and was able to give birth to her children.

This podcast is partially sponsored by ReIME, Rethink Identity Medicine Ethics:

Learn more about our show:

Gender: A Wider Lens
Gender: A Wider Lens
Therapists Stella O’Malley and Sasha Ayad explore diverse perspectives through a psychological lens, fostering open dialogue on gender identity, transition, and the transgender umbrella. Their work with gender dysphoric clients and unique experiences yield an informed outlook delving into gender's psychological nuances. Interviews with clinicians, academics, transgender individuals, parents, detransitioners, and others touched by gender provide varied insights and intimate inquiry into the taboo yet relevant topic.