Sex and Gender
A Reference Handbook
by David E. Newton
May 2017, 362pp, 6 x 9
1 volume, ABC-CLIO

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-5479-8
$66, £51, 58€, A91
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-5480-4
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Gender roles are arguably one of the most important elements of society—especially for teens and young adults who are learning roles fraught with conflicting expectations and continuing to evolve.

Geared toward high school students, undergraduate students, and general readers, this reference work provides a thorough and unbiased treatment of sex, gender, and transgenderism—social issues of particular importance in today's world.

Sex and Gender: A Reference Handbook is a single-volume book that introduces a variety of personal, social, political, and ethical issues of concern to every young adult in the United States today. Written in a style that is accessible and engaging for student readers and researchers, this book examines subjects that are rarely discussed for readers of this age group, providing authoritative information on topics such as gender roles, gender development, and gender inequality; body image; sexual differentiation in humans; the range of human affectional expression; sex education; and LGBT discrimination.

Readers of this reference book will examine a number of important current issues relating to sex and gender, such as transgenderism, gender dysphoria, same-sex attraction, the development of gender roles, the changing perspectives on these topics, and other controversial and unresolved issues in American society today. The book also includes a Data and Documents chapter that contains laws, courts cases, and other primary documents that relate to current issues involving sex and gender.


  • Offers answers to essential questions about transgender issues that are accessible to high school students, undergraduate students, and general readers interested in sex and gender
  • Presents background and insight to a number of social issues and topics that are of considerable interest to young adults but are often treated in a very limited fashion or skipped completely in school curricula
  • Includes a chapter comprising perspective essays that voice diverse opinions regarding controversial gender issues
  • Provides additional resources that enable readers to conduct further research or stay up to date on issues that are as yet unresolved
David E. Newton, EdD, has been a freelance writer of nonfiction books and ancillary materials for young adults for nearly 55 years. He has published more than 400 textbooks, research manuals, trade books, encyclopedias, and encyclopedia articles as well as lab manuals, problems books, and other educational materials. His published work includes ABC-CLIO's Substance Abuse: A Reference Handbook; Gay and Lesbian Rights: A Resource Handbook; GMO Food: A Reference Handbook; The Global Water Crisis: A Reference Handbook; Social Issues in Science and Technology: An Encyclopedia; Wind Energy: A Reference Handbook; World Energy Crisis: A Reference Handbook; The Ozone Dilemma: A Reference Handbook; Fracking: A Reference Handbook; Environmental Justice: A Reference Handbook; Science and Political Controversy: A Reference Handbook; The Animal Experimentation Debate: A Reference Handbook; and Vaccination Controversies: A Reference Handbook. He has also been an updating and consulting editor on a number of books and reference works, such as The Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine; The Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine; Discoveries in Modern Science: Exploration, Invention, and Technology; and Science in Context. Newton was previously a teacher of high school science and mathematics in Grand Rapids, MI, for 13 years; professor of chemistry and physics at Salem State College for 15 years; and adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco for 10 years. He holds a doctorate in science education from Harvard University as well as a bachelor's degree in chemistry (with high distinction) and a master's degree in education from the University of Michigan.


"Newton offers a good introduction to issues much discussed in the public arena but not always well understood by discussants."—Booklist, September 1, 2017

Contemporary World Issues

This award-winning series offers comprehensive, one-volume reference handbooks on important topics related to health, education, the environment, and social and ethical issues.

24-hour cable news. Millions of internet sites. Information overload. How can we sort through the information? Assess the analyses? Trust the sources?

A world of questions demands a library of answers. Contemporary World Issues covers the controversial topics that students, readers, and citizens want to read about, write about, and know more about.


Subject coverage spans six main categories:

  • Criminal Justice
  • Environment
  • Gender and Ethnicity
  • Politics, Law, and Government
  • Science, Technology, and Medicine
  • Society
Each volume offers a rich array of resources:
  • A background and history essay that provides essential context and grounding for further study
  • A balanced summary of ongoing controversies and proposed solutions that show numerous paths for further research on pressing, contemporary questions
  • A forum of authoritative perspective essays by experts, offering a broad spectrum of arguments on the issues
  • Carefully selected annotated documents, tables, and graphs that support statistical literacy and investigation of primary sources
  • A chronology of events, legislation, and movements that place events in sequence and draw connections between them
  • Annotated lists of print, web, and multimedia resources that power the next steps for in-depth research
  • Profiles of key players and organizations
  • A glossary of key terms
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