Oxford University Press refuses to publish professor’s book that challenges gender ideology

Polity Press will now publish his book.

‘Why the trans thing has become so radioactive, I absolutely do not know,’ MIT professor Alex Byrne told The Times.

A publisher refused to print a book that challenges modern gender ideology written by a British Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) philosophy professor.

Oxford University Press (OUP) contracted Byrne’s book, Trouble with Gender: Sex Facts, Gender Fictions, in advance. After Byrne submitted the manuscript, the publisher refused to print it, claiming Byrne did not address gender in “a sufficiently serious or respectful way.”

“These days race and transgender issues are both like the third rail of public discourse,” Alex Byrne, 63, told The Times of London. “You can get in very serious trouble by saying the wrong things about either topic. But why the trans thing has become so radioactive, I absolutely do not know.”

Byrne told The Times he began writing the book in 2021, promising to sort out the debate around gender “once and for all.” He clarified the standards with OUP, asking if claims like “women are adult human females” were likely to raise red flags with the publisher. He received non-committal replies about sentences needing to be “judged in context,” he told The Times.

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After submitting the manuscript, Byrne made clear his openness to revision, per standard practice, he said. But the OUP outright refused to give Byrne a chance to revise his manuscript, effectively rendering the book dead on arrival, despite the 16,000 words of endnotes and citations. He could not make changes because of a clause in his contract, so the agreement was terminated. 

The book will be released by a new publisher, Polity Press, in September.

Byrne told The Times that part of what sparked his passion for the issue was Dr. Kathleen Stock quitting Sussex University in 2021 in the face of student attacks for her positions on gender.

Byrne’s book is the latest in a list of books banned for challenging the leftist narrative on gender.

In 2018, Amazon pulled Ryan T. Anderson’s When Harry Became Sally, a book that disputes the claim that the best solution to gender dysphoria is hormonal and surgical transition. 

In 2021, Target temporarily removed Abigail Shrier’s Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters, which claims children will regret gender transitions later in life.  

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Campus Reform has previously reported that ‘gender-affirming care courses’ have made their way into mandatory education for teachers teaching classes as young as kindergarten. 

Campus Reform contacted Alex Byrne, Oxford University Press, and Polity Press for comment. This article will be updated accordingly.