[ readings/lgbtq ]
A longtime professor of literature at Yeshiva University, Jay Ladin embodied all the characteristics of a good Jewish scholar. Dedicated to his work and faith, he inspired students to live out their full potential in their pursuit of academia. When he returned to school after one transformative summer as Joy Ladin, a woman with beautiful curly hair, the Orthodox Jewish campus was abuzz with curiosity. In Through the Door of Life (University of Wisconsin Press), Ladin reflects on her journey between genders, using faith as both a barrier and navigational tool throughout. She was forced to confront the fact that her religion advocates for a strict separation of the genders, further highlighting the gulf between man and woman. After more than 40 years of living as a man, Ladin's story is proof that identities are multifaceted and often conflicting, making personal growth a lifelong affair.
Thu., May 31, 5:30 p.m., free, Giovanni's Room, 345 S. 12th St., 215-923-2960, giovannisroom.com.