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Out of the Ordinary


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Table of Contents

Foreword by Susan Stryker Editors' Note "In His Own Way, In His Own Time": An Introduction to Out of the Ordinary Out of the Ordinary Author's Introduction Part I. Conquest of the Body 1. Birth and Origins 2. The Nursery 3. Schooldays 4. Oxford 5. War-The Darkest of Days Part II. Conquest of the Mind 6. Medical Student 7. Resident Medical Officer 8. Surgeon M.N. 9. On the Haj 10. Round the World 11. Interlude Ashore 12. The Last Voyage 13. Imji Getsul Michael Dillon / Lobzang Jivaka: A Timeline Acknowledgments

About the Author

Jacob Lau is Assistant Professor of Women's and Gender Studies at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Cameron Partridge is an Episcopal priest, theologian, scholar of trans and religious studies, and an openly transgender man. He has taught at Harvard University, Harvard Divinity School and Episcopal Divinity School and is currently the rector of St. Aidan's Episcopal Church in San Francisco.


"... Dillon's memoir charts his wide-ranging life of education, gender transition, and conversion to Buddhism...show(s) continuity of concerns with those of transgender individuals today." -Publishers Weekly "First and foremost, [Dillon/Jivaka] was a seeker after truth, who traveled wherever his queries led him. His peregrinations from Laura to Michael to Lobzang were all of a piece, as spiritual and metaphysical as they were intellectual and transsexual and medical." -- -Susan Stryker from the foreword "The importance of this work to the history of sexuality-and especially to the history of transsexuality-cannot be overstated." -- -Jose Ignacio Cabezon University of California, Santa Barbara "Blocked from publication in the 1960s and then hidden in a warehouse in London, Michael Dillon's autobiography moldered away for decades in the darkness. Now, for the first time ever, it has burst into print. The book illuminates the life of one of the ground-breaking transgender pioneers of the 20th century. Just important, it is a suspenseful and heart-breaking tale that begins at the English seaside and ends with a mysterious death in the Himalayan mountains. In his gripping autobiography, Dillon finds new answers to enduring questions about gender. At the same time, he never manages to solve the puzzle of his own identity and dies in the pursuit of transcendence. Dillon's memoir deserves a place alongside the great spiritual narratives, from Augustine to Merton. This edition is beautifully put together, with an introduction and notes supplied by a trio of scholars who have immersed themselves in Dillon's life history." -- -Pagan Kennedy author of The First Man-Made Man "While so much of the history of transsexualism has circulated around and through a few highly publicized lives of trans women, Jacob Lau and Cameron Partridge have made an indelible contribution to the modern histories of gender and sexuality by publishing this autobiography. Their introduction carefully situates the history of one of the earliest female to male transitions and gives us a smart and sympathetic account of the political, social and material complexities of Dillon/Jivaka's life. This is an astonishing story." -- -Jack Halberstam author of Female Masculinity and In a Queer Time and Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives

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