Review: Feinberg’s Stone Butch Blues

Stone Butch Blues: A Novel
Leslie Feinberg

This novel/memoir chronicles the world of a working class lesbian, gay, and transgendered people in New York from the days before Stonewall to the early nineties. It is a classic and was at the time it came out the most important book written to date on transgender issues. It is complex story of a complex person trying to find their way in a world hell bent on destroying them.  It is by turns horrifying, uplifting, aggravating and inspiring.

I cried reading it on the train.

Feinberg was a committed communist, and some of the scenes involving worker solidarity are contrived. But all in all, the book is well written and deeply moving. You should know the book chronicles the LGBT scene pre-Stonewall and that includes scenes of gay bashing that are horrific, yet all too realistic.

That said, this is a book very much worth reading.

Recommended.