Gender Identity

Abigail Shrier Worries Teenage Gender Transitions Lead to 'Irreversible Damage'

The controversial author on her acclaimed and condemned book, being deplatformed, and the future of free expression in an increasingly polarized marketplace of ideas


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"In the last decade, there's been a sudden explosion…in teenage girls identifying as transgender," says Abigail Shrier, author of Irrervisible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters. "My book explores what's going on. Why do so many young teenage girls suddenly decide that they want to leave womanhood? And why are so many doctors and therapists and teachers helping them?"

Abigail Shrier's Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters was one of last year's most celebrated—and condemned—books. It showed up in year-end lists of top books but was also banned by Target and her publisher was disallowed from buying ads at Amazon.

"Shrier's book is a dangerous polemic with a goal of making people not trans," wrote an American Civil Liberties Union attorney on Twitter. "We have to fight these ideas which are leading to the criminalization of trans life again."

A lawyer by training, Shrier says she supports the rights of adults to undergo gender-reassignment surgery. But she thinks teenage girls are making irrevocable changes to their bodies that in coming years they might wish they could reverse.

In a new paperback edition of Irreversible Damage, Shrier follows up on several of the women she spoke with and details her experiences of being deplatformed. Reason's Nick Gillespie talks with Shrier about the controversy over her book, whether her sales benefitted from the Streisand effect, and the future of free expression in an increasingly polarized cultural landscape.

Photos: ID 177128012 ©  |, ID 146353778 © Surabky |, ID 88582104 © Juan Moyano |, ID 87820851 © Feng Yu |, Fanatic Studio/Gary Waters/Newscom.

Music: Bring to Light, by Max H, Artlist. 
Hosted and narrated by Nick Gillespie; edited by Noor Greene; additional graphics by Isaac Reese; audio by Ian Keyser.