Despite an admittedly provocative title, the book Hung Jury: Testimonies of Genital Surgery by Transsexual Men (Transgress Press, 2013) debunks the prurient myths and negative stereotypes surrounding those transmen who choose to undergo surgery as part of their transition from female to male. Through these stories, one learns about the myriad of unique issues that arise for trans men during both the transition process and dating post-transition. Also, Hung Jury is one of the few resources published to date that include reflections from partners and spouses, a demographic often overlooked in transgender studies.
Those looking for graphic before and after stories replete with graphics should look elsewhere. Within this book one finds informed accounts from transmen compiled by Trystan T. Cotten, who is an Associate Professor of Gender and African American Studies at California State University, Stanislaus and Managing Editor of Transgress Press.
Cotten states that gender identity is not defined soley by one’s physical attributes, adding that this book places what this surgery means in a broader context. “This book shows how important a penis is for many trans men to feel and function as men in the world. In addition to feeling physical complete, it allows men to feel comfortable in locker rooms, public bathrooms, and swimming pools. It also deepens many men’s emotional and sexual connections with their partners and increases others’ chances of finding love and romance.”
For those looking to connect with Cotten in person, he will be promoting the book at the National Transgender Health Summit in Oakland (sponsored by UCSF) on May 17-18 where he will be giving a lecture on the transformative impact of genital surgery on transmen’s lives. Then on May 30th he will lead a panelist of contributors to Hung Jury at the LGBT Center in Los Angeles. Then on June 15th, he will present the panel again at the Philly Trans-Health Conference. Additional events will follow.
Transgender Press’ forthcoming books include Zander Keig’s newest anthology Brotherhood is Powerful: Stories of Liberation by Transsexual Men, Brice Smith’s biography of a trans activist Lou Sullivan Yours in Liberation: The Queer Life of Trans Pioneer Lou Sullivan, and Stealth World: Our Stories of Hiding in Plain Sight co-edited by a trans man and woman.