English Blog

Puberty Sucks enough even knowing what gender you are. April 13, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — writing4english @ 11:51 AM

Puberty. We all went through it, lived it, hated it. But i think Cal has it a lot worse than we ever thought it could be. Today, kids in middle school have teachers and videos to give them the sex talks. Its just a more open topic. When I was in fifth grade we watched videos that explained everything. I had health class in sixth grade and eighth grade. Everything was laid out for us. Cal has nothing. Her parents wont even talk to her, on page 284 she says, ” My mother avoided bodily matters too. She never spoke openly about sex. She never undressed in front of me… Milton was unable to discuss the birds and the bees with his young daughter, and so i was left, in those years, to figure things out for myself.”

Cal has no outside help at all to know what to expect. And to make it worse, she doesnt even know what gender she is supposed to be. At least for us, even if our parents didn’t tell us or we ignored the videos and shut our eyes at the gross parts, we at least could see the changes. I was a boy. I could at least see that my dad had a lower voice and more hair than i did. I could assume that girls knew they would grow in the chest region and that those tampax commercials would become relevant. But at least for cal i guess it was a fifty fifty chance. That sounds awful.

For my final essay im doing the first research topic. I think it will lean more towards the genetic mutation and how it leads to intersexed individuals and how they deal with the mutations as well. I think im just going to write it all out, i dont really have any previous wprk related to this topic. For now, my thesis is : “In Middlesex,the main character Cal is an intersexed individual that experiences the daily issues and complications of her anatomy. Her mutation is not common be can be explained, as well as how she chooses to live her life before and after her rebirth.” Thats is still a work in progress. and you can tell me if it sucks you dont have to be nice about it. One source i have found is the website for the Intersex Society of America which has a lot of info plus books on the subject as well. One problem i can see coming is balancing the research material with support from the book. Is it like a 60/40 ratio between research facts and novel relation or what… So thats pretty much my only problem i see for now.

Tyler Staruch

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3 Responses to “Puberty Sucks enough even knowing what gender you are.”

  1. I really like your post! I think readers feel extreme symphathy for her because not only does she have to go through puberty but experience both male and female physical changes too.

    Danielle Harteau

  2. I saw that you had the same quote that I wanted to use, but I still chose to use it because I think we both found interesting ways to elaborate and relate to it. It goes to show how powerful this quote is and how we were both able to pick it apart differently, which I think Professor Gerds wants us to be able to do.

    Kristen Danyal

  3. Ok, Tyler.

    Blog-Good point. Puberty does suck regardless. And even if your parents didn’t talk to you about stuff, most schools do SOMETHING these days so you’re not out in the dark alone.

    Proposal-Topic idea sounds good. No problem about not using previous material. On the thesis: I think it is OK. But it could be better if you wrote how you will explain it. Like, according to what? What will you be explaining that isn’t already covered? Once you do the research, you’ll likely have a clearer idea of what you are talking about, I think.

    As far as balancing out the novel with research goes, I think 60/40 is fine. Even 70/30 would be fine. Basically, pick the topics you want to discuss in order to make them relevant to Cal. Then in each section, discuss what topic you researched that remotely deals with Cal’s situation and provide a conclusion that applies all the info you’ve gotten from “science,” making sense of “fiction”. Right? Ask if you have problems.

    Last but not least, this source material does not count as a book or journal. I could go to the website and look up my own book, find the author and what it is about, but that’s what YOU were supposed to do, you know?

    ~Jenna G.


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