As part of our periodic series of scathing book reviews, from the TLS:
The tragedy of queer studies is that a subject of exceptional importance to humanity is left in the clutches of show-offs who reduce it to self-centred banality. Sexuality and gender are at the heart of understanding human motivation. Treated with intelligence and authorial modesty, the innate differences, indoctrinated codes and enforced disciplines of masculinity and femininity – to say nothing of the sumptuous diversity of sexual inclinations and expressions – should be central to historical understanding. These inspiriting topics underlie many kinds of conduct: aggression, loyalty, fear, altruism, envy, intuition, hatred, creativity. Instead, the subject is dominated by inhumane pedants who pride themselves on meretricious mental perversity and teach their pupils to use words such as virtuous, self-respecting and dignified as pejorative epithets.