In My Butch Career Esther Newton tells the compelling, disarming, and at times sexy story of her struggle to write, teach, and find love, all while coming to terms with her identity. Newton recounts a series of traumas and conflicts, from being molested as a child to her failed attempts to live a “normal,” straight life in high school and college. She discusses being denied tenure at Queens College and nearly again so at SUNY Purchase. With humor and grace, she describes her introduction to middle-class gay life and her love affairs. By age forty, where Newton’s narrative ends, she began to achieve personal and scholarly stability in the company of the first politicized generation of out lesbian and gay scholars with whom she helped create gender and sexuality studies. Affecting and immediate, My Butch Career is a story of a gender outlaw in the making, an invaluable account of a beloved and influential figure in LGBT history, and a powerful reminder of only how recently it has been possible to be an openly queer academic.
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