By Jane Friedman
October 23rd, 2012
In the Fall 2012 issue, we are honored to feature an essay from Harvard professor Stephen Burt on his cross-dressing. He says:
What follows are tentative answers to persistent questions about how I look, how I want to look, why I often think that I would rather have been a woman, and why I’m sure I won’t try to become one. It has to do with sexual feeling, but it says almost nothing about sexual acts. … I also refer to poetry, since I care far more about poems—and think more often about them—than about how I look. I am a literary critic and a writer of verse, a parent and husband and friend, before and after I am a guy in a skirt, or a guy in blue jeans, or a fictional girl.
You can read his remarkable piece here at our website.
For further reading, we also recommend:
• Poetry’s Cross-Dressing Kingmaker by Mark Oppenheimer (New York Times magazine), which tells the story of Burt as one of the most influential poetry critics of his generation
• Stephen Burt Explains His Favorite Poems by Mark Oppenheimer (New York Times 6th Floor blog), where Burt comments on two of his favorite poems referenced in the magazine profile
• Whom and What to Read to Make You Like Poetry (and Sci-Fi) by Mark Oppenheimer (New York Times 6th Floor blog), which recommends other critics aside from Burt
If you’re on Twitter, follow Burt at @accommodatingly.
Fall 2012: Female Conscience