Fall 2024

The Gender Binary Is a Big Lie

Infinite Identities around the World

From the Series Queer History Project

  • Interest Level: Grade 6 - Grade 12
  • Reading Level: Grade 6

What if you discovered that the whole concept of a gender binary is an illusion?

While many people identify as men or women, that is not all there is. The idea that all humans fall into one of two gender categories is largely a construct created by those who benefit from that belief. The reality is that gender is naturally diverse, falling inside and outside of those boxes, and more expansive ideas of gender have always existed.

In the second book of the Queer History Project, The Gender Binary Is a Big Lie: Infinite Identities around the World, author Lee Wind uses historical evidence and primary sources—poetry, ancient burial sites, firsthand accounts, and news stories—to explore gender roles and identities. Gender identities and physical bodies are as diverse as the human experience. Get ready to shatter those preconceived notions of nothing but a gender binary and dive deep into expressions of gender—both past and present—that reveal the infinite variety and beauty of everyone’s gender.

Format Your Price Add
On pre-order until 08/06/2024
On pre-order until 08/06/2024
On pre-order until 08/06/2024
Available at all major wholesalers and distributors. Save 25% off list price on hardcovers and ebooks when you buy direct! Digital purchases will be accessed on Lerner Digital Bookshelf. An account will be created for you after purchase.
Interest Level Grade 6 - Grade 12
Reading Level Grade 6
Genre Social Studies, Young Adult
Category 5 Kinds of Nonfiction, 5KN: Traditional Nonfiction, Diverse Books: LGBTQIA+, Diverse Books: Race & Ethnicity, Diverse Books: Social Class, Diverse Books: Social Justice, Diversity, SEL: B Self-Management, SEL: C Social Awareness, Social Emotional Learning
Copyright 2024
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Zest Books ™
Language English
Number of Pages 312
Publication Date 2024-08-06
Text Type Informational/Explanatory
BISACS YAN006150, YAN052020, YAN038010
Dewey 305.3
Dimensions 5.5 x 8.25
Features Author/Illustrator biography, Bibliography/further reading, Glossary, Photo captions, Reviewed, Sidebars, Source notes, Starred Reviews, Table of contents, Teaching Guides, and eSource

Author: Lee Wind

Lee Wind is the founding blogger and publisher of I'm Here. I'm Queer. What The Hell Do I Read?, an award-winning website about books, culture, and empowerment for Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, Questioning and Queer youth, and their Allies. He is the author of No Way, They Were Gay?: Hidden Lives and Secret Loves, which won the ILA Children's and Young Adult's Book Award and was named a 2021 Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Book. Lee also works for IBPA and SCBWI. Visit him online at www.leewind.org to see and share how #QueerHistoryIsEverywhere.

Lerner eSource™ offers free digital teaching and learning resources, including Common Core State Standards (CCSS) teaching guides. These guides, created by classroom teachers, offer short lessons and writing exercises that give students specific instruction and practice using Common Core skills and strategies. Lerner eSource also provides additional resources including online activities, downloadable/printable graphic organizers, and additional educational materials that would also support Common Core instruction. Download, share, pin, print, and save as many of these free resources as you like!

Queer History Project

Take a fascinating journey through LGBTQIA2+ history, delving into primary sources to explore and reclaim the lives, loves, and identities of historical figures around the world. View available downloads →

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Foreword Reviews

“Edifying…reveals worlds in which gender nonconformity is celebrated.”—Foreword Reviews


“Through unpacking the ancient yet ongoing human experience with gender, Wind presents an informative and approachable starting point for readers wanting to learn what gender really is and how it may apply to them.”—Booklist

Kirkus Reviews

“An accessible, thorough, curiosity-provoking introduction to gender.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews

Seven Graham

“This book is a must-read for anyone interested in gender & the history of gender diversity around the world. As a Brit intersex, non-binary & transmasc creativity & mental health coach in Hollywood, I feel seen and happy to know more of our contributions to humanity—lots to be proud about!” —Seven Graham, Producer, Writer, Actor

Dreya Blume

“This book will save lives. By normalizing the existence of gender diversity through time and space, by sharing a beautiful array of stories, by interrogating the tyranny of the gender binary in such a gentle yet forceful way, Lee Wind offers inspiration and encouragement at a time when it is most needed.” —Dreya Blume, Psychotherapist and Author

Sarah Prager

“Lee Wind uses an easy-to-understand, engaging voice to teach young readers the important truth that there have always been more than two genders. While also developing the reader’s skills for thoughtful historical analysis on any subject, Wind shares well-researched, fascinating stories and concepts for any well-rounded education. The Gender Binary Is a Big Lie belongs in every classroom, library, and bookshelf.”—Sarah Prager, author of Queer, There, and Everywhere, Rainbow Revolutionaries, and A Child’s Introduction to Pride

Rob Bittner

“Wind’s accessible and informative deep dive into the history (and the now) of gender around the world will open eyes and minds.”—Rob Bittner, LGBTQ+ Literature Advocate and Educator