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Northwestern Sex Researcher Investigated, Results Unknown
by Andrew Davis
2004-12-08

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Northwestern University has concluded its investigation into complaints against J. Michael Bailey, a psychology professor who has been accused of failing to inform transsexual women that they were research subjects before he wrote about them in a 2003 book. However, the school will not reveal its findings or say whether it punished Bailey, The Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

Bailey resigned as chairman of the university's psychology department in October, Alan K. Cubbage, a Northwestern spokesman, told the Chronicle. Cubbage added that the change had nothing to do with the investigation. Bailey remains a full professor at the university.

In letters to several transsexual women who have complained about Bailey, Northwestern's provost, Lawrence B. Dumas, said only that he had 'taken action that I believe is appropriate in this situation.' The provost did not reveal details because, he wrote, 'personnel actions concerning university employees are confidential.' The letters infuriated transsexual women who filed complaints about Bailey in 2003.

Several transsexual women complained to the university that Bailey had written about them in his book, The Man Who Would Be Queen: The Science of Gender-Bending and Transsexualism, without getting their approval to be research participants.

The transsexual women are also unhappy with the thesis of Bailey's book, in which he ditches the theory that men who want a sex change to become women are women trapped in men's bodies. Rather, Bailey writes, they either are extremely feminine gay men or are sexual fetishists who are 'erotically obsessed with the image of themselves as women.'


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