This article puts Gayle Rubin's 1984 article “Thinking Sex” in dialogue with Earl Lind's 1918 book Autobiography of an Androgyne. Rooted in different historical moments, the two works address distinct debates about the nature, politics, and ethics of sexual and gender variance. Taken together, they remind us that our varied attempts to label, describe, and explain gender and sexuality—to define them, knit them together, and tug them apart—have a complex history shaped and stamped by the particular contexts in which they evolved. The two historical texts pry us out of the familiar and thereby position us, in a sense, to anachronize the present, to see our own ways of seeing the world as contingent, curious, and changeable.

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