Alice Dreger's attacks on critics of J. Michael Bailey

Alice Dreger is a Northwestern University employee who has an ongoing personal feud with me because of my tone and tactics in responding to the book The Man Who Would Be Queen by J. Michael Bailey. Her obsession with me began in 2006 when she was unable to suppress a speech I was invited to give at Northwestern and was unable to get me fired. She spent the next 18 months writing a one-sided hatchet job accusing noted engineer Lynn Conway, noted economist Deirdre McCloskey and me of masterminding a conspiracy to "ruin" Bailey. Dreger released her paper a year before it was to be published alongside critical responses, and it got a little traction thanks to a New York Times writer seeking payback for LGBT criticism about a pro-Bailey piece he had written in 2005. That led to a radio interview where Dreger defended Bailey, but that was about it until the paper was actually published in June 2008.

Selected resources

Responses to Dreger in Archives of Sexual Behavior

Dreger's defense of J. Michael Bailey: The peer commentary papers tear it apart (by Lynn Conway)

National Women's Studies Association conference 2008

In 2007 Point Foundation scholar Joelle Ruby Ryan of Bowling Green State University proposed a panel at NWSA called The Bailey brouhaha: Community members speak out on resisting transphobia and sexism in academia and beyond. Joelle was immediately attacked by Alice Dreger, which prompted me and two other women to present papers in support of Joelle.


Academic Attack Against Transwoman by Alice Dreger (by Joelle Ruby Ryan)

Joelle Ruby Ryan chairs NWSA panel on resisting transphobia in academia: The event Alice Dreger failed to stop (by Lynn Conway)

NWSA Papers (recommended to review with accompanying video)

Joelle Ruby Ryan
Paper: Introduction to the Panel (PDF)

Élise Hendrick
Paper: Quiet, down there! The discourse of academic freedom as defence of hierarchy in the aftermath of J. Michael Bailey's The Man Who Would Be Queen (PDF)

Katrina Rose
Paper: Go ask Alice but not about transsexuals' lives and history: A defense of the right of members of an oppressed class to speak for themselves (PDF)

Andrea James
Paper: Fair comment, foul play: Populist responses to J. Michael Bailey's exploitative "controversies" (PDF)

NWSA video (recommended to review with accompanying papers above)

Joelle Ruby Ryan Video: Part 1

Joelle Ruby Ryan Video: Part 2

Élise Hendrick Video: Part 1

Élise Hendrick Video: Part 2

Élise Hendrick Video: Part 3

Katrina Rose Video: Part 1

Katrina Rose Video: Part 2

Andrea James Video: Part 1

Andrea James Video: Part 2

Question & Comment Video: Part 1

Question & Comment Video: Part 2