Samantha's Library

Understanding Cross-Dressing
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Understanding Cross-Dressing

A Discussion From Many Points of View

Virginia Prince, Ph.D

Paperback / Sandy Thomas Publications / 1976


It is such a shame that this outstanding, and very important, work by Virginia Prince is so shoddily published.  Yet, despite the poor editing and publishing, even with all the typographical and printing errors it is well worth reading.  I personally believe that Sandy Thomas Publications needs a good swift kick in the proverbial butt for the poor effort that went into this, now out of print, publication.

The book opens with an attempt to clarify and identify the type of cross-dresser with which the following chapters deal.  Starting with the interesting analogies of "nobles and peasants" and "mountains and valleys", Virginia attempts to explain how men and women are positioned within our society.  She then provides her version of why some boys/men become femmifiles, (FPs), and some do not.  Even upon first reading I was totally convinced that her reasoning was dead on the mark.  Expanding upon that she develops the reason as to why psychologists and psychiatrists seem to be unable to "cure" cross-dressing.  This is, indeed, very powerful reading.

The main part of the book ends at page 43, the last section dealing with motivations, satisfactions, consequences, understanding, acceptance, peace of mind, and resources available to cross-dressers.

The remaining 102 pages consist of essays and editorials from the magazine Transvestia.  Each contributes to the overall theme of the book providing additional thought provoking material.  Despite the fact that these "chapters" are addressed to the FP they reinforce the hypotheses Virginia espouses in the main part of the book.  As a prime example of the outstanding content of these editorials, pages 58 to 59 contain a very powerful extract from the book, "Masculine/Feminine —Readings in Sexual Mythology and the Liberation of Women", by Betty and Theodore Roszack, — Harper Colophon Books, New York, 1969.  You can read it [here].

If you choose to read only one book in your efforts to understand cross-dressing, I think that this should be it.

This book is available at Amazon.
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