The Psychobiology of Transsexualism and Transgenderism
A New View Based on Scientific Evidence
by Thomas E. Bevan, PhD
November 2014, 257pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-3126-3
$75, £58, 66€, A103
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-3127-0
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

At least one percent of males and a half-percent of females in the U.S. are transgender.

Written by a biopsychologist, this book describes and explains transsexualism and transgenderism (TSTG) from a scientific vantage point.

Why does a male violate cultural gender rules and dress and act as a woman? Why does a female violate cultural rules to dress and act as a man? Why do some males and females undergo radical medical procedures in order to permanently change their bodies so that they are closer, respectively, to female and male bodies? In this book, a Princeton University-trained physiological psychologist explores dozens of theories about what may spur transsexual and transgender (TSTG) thinking, exposes the myths of fetishism, homosexuality, prenatal hormones, or child rearing as causes, and explains the two causes that are supported by current science.

Covering a breadth of topics that include neuroanatomy, choice, psychodynamics, and transsexual transition, author Thomas E. Bevan, PhD, synthesizes the pertinent research regarding transsexualism and transgenderism across 22 scientific disciplines. The book covers various gender systems from antiquity to historical and contemporary cultures that support the biological basis of transsexualism and transgenderism, addresses human development from the time prior to conception through adulthood and potential transsexual transition, and corrects common myths and assumptions about TSTG individuals, such as that crossdressing is basically motivated by a desire for sexual arousal. The book also includes sections that cite definitions of key terms and identify related reading, organizations for support, and current TSTG events worldwide.


  • Provides an unprecedented comprehensive coverage of transsexual and transgender science
  • Enables readers ranging from the general public to medical professionals, experimental and clinical psychologists, and policymakers with a broad understanding of transsexualism and transgenderism (TSTG) based on available scientific knowledge
  • Underscores how the conventional wisdom regarding the causes of transsexualism and transgenderism is wrong, and that the causal factors supported by scientific evidence are genetics and epigenetics
  • Supplies a balanced depiction of transsexual transition as a process that has proven to generate positive results but involves some specific health risks
  • Explains how the biology of TSTG people is different from non-TSTG people
Thomas E. Bevan, PhD, is an accomplished biopsychologist who has performed extensive research on transsexualism and transgenderism. Bevan also conducts research to develop new technologies to improve medical training, medical treatment, and telemedicine. He received his doctorate in physiological psychology from Princeton University and his bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Dartmouth College.


"[T]he book is noteworthy for its refusal to treat TSTG as a disease or mental illness and its refusal to classify TSTG persons as pathological. In addition, it offers a unique survey of TSTG concerns across the life span. Summing Up: Recommended. Undergraduates, graduate students, professionals, general readers."—Choice, April 1, 2015
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