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Gender Troubles: The Butches cover image

Gender Troubles: The Butches 2016

Highly Recommended

Distributed by Catholic Schoolgirl Gone Bad Productions, 3038 Hillegass Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
Produced by Lisa Plourde
Directed by Lisa Plourde
DVD , color, 54 min.

Middle School - General Adult
Gender Roles, Discrimination, Homosexuality

Date Entered: 05/29/2018

Reviewed by LaRoi Lawton, Library & Learning Resources Department, Bronx Community College of the City University of New York

This eight part documentary looks at the lives of several women who are lesbians and unmistakably, butch. What exactly does it mean to be a ‘butch lesbian’? The viewer is introduced to Lisa Plourde (this film’s producer) Lenn, Stacey, Sasha and Alison; each speak about the societal, family views they were subjected to regarding their gender orientation both as a group and person. Many of the negative comments come from family, friends and strangers. But what this film deftly illustrates is the real life struggles of these and other butch lesbian women who just want to be themselves. These women are empowered, intelligent and hardworking individuals but are they protected in the sense of being able to walk down any street USA and be treated as a citizen within any community USA?

Gender Troubles explores the real lives of ‘butch lesbians’ and the daily hurdles and isolation these women go through which many heterosexual people take for granted. Being ‘butch’ and working as a college professor, teacher, grocery store clerk or manager, leads to differing responses, most of which are negative.

There is so much information in this 54 minute film about ‘butch lesbians’ and their world. It defies segregation, isolation and societal un-acceptance. What is ironic about this film is that gay men have come a long way to acceptance by the society at large, at least to some degree. Yet for these women, the struggle continues even within the LGBT community.