History Channel Episode on JB to air 12/30

There will be a History Channel episode on Dec. 30, at 11 PM that addresses the life of one Professor Jennifer Finney Boylan. The series is “Strange Rituals” and the episode is “Beyond Sex.” This was taped two years ago– but I remember the producer, Deborah Blum, being very smart and thoughtful.

Here’s the description from the History Channel web site:
The line that separates male from female is blurred. In India, the Hijra are a two-thousand-year-old religious sect; their ranks filled with boys who have been–or desire to be–castrated. We meet a Hijra who’s in love with a married man, and who fears that she’ll soon be abandoned and forced into a life of prostitution. In Maine, a male English Professor changed his name to Jennifer, and then struggled to keep her job and her place in her family with a wife and two kids. And in Atlanta, a man makes performance art based on his transition from female to male.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  1. Posted December 22, 2009 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    Oh, so very cool, Jenny!

    … I remember Deborah Blum in my old gender reading back in the early 1990’s, she was writing general material on male/female biological/neurological differences then that would impact behavior and social custom.

  2. Posted December 23, 2009 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    Jaysus Boylan! What are the odds there was another English Prof. with the same name in Maine?


    I’ll get me coat.

  3. Pam
    Posted December 29, 2009 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

    Can’t wait to watch this tomorrow night with one of my best friends from high school! I’m a student at Bates and he goes to Wesleyan. I’ve read both of your memoirs so I’m definitely looking forward to this program.

  4. Joanna Johnson
    Posted January 1, 2010 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    The show was very well done! I wish I’d told all my friends and family to watch. Great segment with Jenny, Didi, and the boys! Very uplifting.

  5. Carolyn
    Posted January 1, 2010 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Nice job. Particular thanks to DeeDee for being willing to talk on camera. As another wife, it is comforting to know I’m not crazy for staying married.
    I do wish the program a a whole had not so much emphasized the exotic, but your family’s normality was a good antidote.

  6. Margie
    Posted January 4, 2010 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    I’m so bummed that I missed it. Hoping it’s re-broadcasted.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

  • The Boylan Family, summer 2010

    DSC_0063 "You hang around our family, you learn all kinds of stuff."
  • Will Forte as Jennifer Finney Boylan on “Saturday Night Live”

    WiFo-Jennifer Finney Boylan-1
  • Jenny with Barbara Walters, December, 2008

  • Jenny atop Maine’s Mount Katahdin

    2036947979_34bfbec240 August, 2002.
  • Surrounded

    boylanWith President Clinton and Maine's Governor John Baldacci, fall 2006.
  • JFB and Edward Albee


    Edward had been my teacher at Johns Hopkins in the winter of 1986. He visited Colby in fall, 2007. As we took our leave of each other, he kissed me on both cheeks and said, "We have done well. You and I."

  • Jenny and her teacher, the great John Barth


    Jack was my professor at JHU when I did my thesis, back in the day. After many years, I can now confidently say I finally understand his definition of plot. Which is, of course, "the perturbation of an unstable homeostatic system and its catastrophic restoration to a new and complexified equilibrium."