Leslie Feinberg

A working-class lesbian, transgender activist, and communist, Leslie Feinberg became an important voice for lesbians of hir generation with the publication of hir powerful 1993 novel Stone Butch Blues. Feinberg came of age working in factories, and joined the Workers World Party, later becoming a writer and managing editor for the Workers World newspaper, where hir “Lavender & Red” articles discussed LGBT issues. In 1992 ze published Transgender Liberation: A Movement Whose Time Has Come, followed by hir first novel, Stone Butch Blues, a year later. The novel struck a chord with readers worldwide, and was translated into several languages, including Chinese, Turkish, Italian, and Hebrew. A later book, Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to RuPaul, won the Firecracker Alternative Book Award. Ze went on to publish a collection of articles and a second novel, Drag King Dreams, in 2006. Beyond hir writing, Feinberg spent decades fiercely advocating for a wide spectrum of disadvantaged groups, including the disabled, the working class, women, homosexuals, and transgender people. After decades of battling complications from Lyme disease, Feinberg died at the age of sixty-five.


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Leslie Feinberg.

Courtesy of Marilyn Humphreys.

Date of Birth

Kansas City, MO
United States

Date of Death
Writer, Activist, Journalist, Editor

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Leslie Feinberg." (Viewed on March 5, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/feinberg-leslie>.


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