Through the Door of Life: A Jewish Journey between Genders

Paperback | October 8, 2013

byJoy Ladin

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National Jewish Book Award Finalist for Memoir

Professor Jay Ladin made headlines around the world when, after years of teaching literature at Yeshiva University, he returned to the Orthodox Jewish campus as a woman—Joy Ladin. In Through the Door of Life, Joy Ladin takes readers inside her transition as she changed genders and, in the process, created a new self.
With unsparing honesty and surprising humor, Ladin wrestles with both the practical problems of gender transition and the larger moral, spiritual, and philosophical questions that arise. Ladin recounts her struggle to reconcile the pain she experienced living as the “wrong” gender with the pain of her children in losing the father they love. We eavesdrop on her lifelong conversations with the God whom she sees both as the source of her agony and as her hope for transcending it. We look over her shoulder as she learns to walk and talk as a woman after forty-plus years of walking and talking as a man. We stare with her into the mirror as she asks herself how the new self she is creating will ever become real.
Ladin’s poignant memoir takes us from the death of living as the man she knew she wasn’t, to the shattering of family and career that accompanied her transition, to the new self, relationships, and love she finds when she opens the door of life.

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From the Publisher

National Jewish Book Award Finalist for Memoir Professor Jay Ladin made headlines around the world when, after years of teaching literature at Yeshiva University, he returned to the Orthodox Jewish campus as a woman—Joy Ladin. In Through the Door of Life, Joy Ladin takes readers inside her transition as she changed genders and, in the ...

Joy Ladin, the David and Ruth Gottesman Professor of English at Stern College for Women of Yeshiva University, is the first openly transgender employee of an Orthodox Jewish institution. She is the author of six books of poetry, including The Definition of Joy and Coming to Life.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:270 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.8 inPublished:October 8, 2013Publisher:University of Wisconsin PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299287343

ISBN - 13:9780299287344

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
A Blessing (Spring 2007)
Introduction: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Stern College (September 2008)
Part One
Who Will Be
1 Things Fall Apart (Summer 2005)
2 Being a Man (Fall 2006)
3 Girl in a Bag (Winter 2007)
4 In the Image (Spring 2007)
5 Suicide (Spring 2007)
6 Truth (Spring 2007)
7 Choosing Life (June 26, 2007)
Part Two
Adolescence
8 Adolescence (Summer 2007)
9 Mothering (Summer 2007)
10 Like a Natural Woman (July 2007)
11 Anger (Summer 2007)
vii
Part Three
The Door of Life
12 The Day My Father Died (October 2, 2007)
13 The God Thing (Fall 2007)
14 The Voice of the Future (Summer 2008)
15 Two Trips to the Wailing Wall (March 2002 and October 2008)
16 Teaching Naked (Spring 2010)
17 The Door of Life (March 2010)
18 Try (May 2010)

Editorial Reviews

“This is an emotionally intense, deeply personal memoir of self-discovery.”—PFLAG