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THE GENDER QUEST WORKBOOK by Rylan Jay Testa Kirkus Star


A Guide for Teens and Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity

by Rylan Jay Testa & Deborah Coolhart & Jayme Peta

Age Range: 12 - 18

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-62625-297-4
Publisher: New Harbinger

An open-ended workbook offers young people questioning their gender identity tools for thinking, feeling, and strategizing.

Introductory chapters lay out such basic concepts as gender identity, gender expression, and differences between sex and gender. Later chapters discuss various areas of life where gender comes into play, from family to school and work to dating and sex. Information is presented in brief, straightforward segments, but exercises for readers form the bulk of each chapter. The authors use an expansive variety of approaches, from observational exercises to drawing prompts to asking readers to circle words that describe their feelings. What makes this book so powerful is the balance the authors strike between asking open-ended questions and offering readers tools from which to build answers. A segment on socioeconomic status asks a series of practical questions starting with "are there any parts of your gender exploration that will cost money?" A table for planning "experiments," such as wearing a men's shirt, prompts readers with questions about location, materials, and safety considerations. One chapter in particular focuses on religious, ethnic, and other identities that intersect with gender, and both the inclusive nature of the questions and the broad range of example scenarios throughout make the book well-suited to a diverse readership.

An invaluable resource for all young people on a gender quest. (supplemental Web content) (Nonfiction. 12-18)