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Anne Fausto-Sterling, Ph. D. (born 1944) is Professor of Biology and Gender Studies at Brown University. She participates actively in the field of sexology and has written extensively on the fields of biology of gender, sexual identity, gender identity, and gender roles.

She has written two books intended for the general audience. The second edition of the first of those books, Myths of Gender, was published in 1992. [1]

Her second book for the general public is Sexing the Body, published in 2000.[2] She stated that in it she sets out to "convince readers of the need for theories that allow for a good deal of human variation and that integrate the analytical powers of the biological and the social into the systematic analysis of human development."

In a paper entitled "The Five Sexes"[3], in which, according to her, "I had intended to be provocative, but I had also written with tongue firmly in cheek,"[4], Fausto-Sterling laid out a thought experiment considering an alternative model of gender containing five sexes: male, female, merm, ferm, and herm. This thought experiment was interpreted by some as a serious proposal or even a theory; advocates for intersexual people stated that this theory was wrong, confusing and unhelpful to the interests of intersexual people. In a later paper ("The Five Sexes, Revisited"[4]) she has acknowledged these objections.

Fausto-Sterling also takes an interest in how flatworms (more precisely planaria) manage to reproduce themselves asexually.

Fausto-Sterling is married to Paula Vogel, a Yale professor and Pulitzer-winning playwright.[5]


  1. ^ Fausto-Sterling, Anne (1992). Myths of gender: biological theories about women and men. New York: BasicBooks. ISBN 0-465-04792-0.  
  2. ^ Fausto-Sterling, Anne (2000). Sexing the body: gender politics and the construction of sexuality. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-07714-5.  
  3. ^ A. Fausto-Sterling (1993). "The Five Sexes: Why male and female are not enough". The Sciences (May/April 1993): 20–24.  
  4. ^ a b Fausto-Sterling A (2000). "The five sexes, revisited". Sciences (New York) 40 (4): 18–23. PMID 12569934.  
  5. ^ "Paula Vogel, Anne Fausto-Sterling". The New York Times. 2004-09-26. Retrieved 2007-07-21.  

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