This is a great article and I am signal boosting it with a vengeance.
Doctor James Barry was a well respected and hugely influential Army doctor. His work improved medical conditions for soldiers receiving medical care during warfare and his practices around cleanliness and sanitation made their way into hospitals back home too.
But that’s not why we’re talking about Dr Barry today.
Despite all his achievements, Dr Barry is mainly remembered because of rampant speculation about his gender.
After his death – despite his will and direct wishes – it was ‘exposed’ that James Barry had been assigned female at birth.
As a result of this, the good doctor has been claimed by some as a figure in women’s history. Several books about Barry include the word ‘woman’ in the title, with a new with a novel due out soon that presents Barry as a woman.
Still others argue that his identity is too complex to define… but is this the truth of…
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