Ben Barres was known for his groundbreaking scientific work and for his groundbreaking advocacy for gender equality in science. In this book, completed shortly before his death from pancreatic cancer in December 2017, Barres (born Barbara Barres in 1954) describes a life full of remarkable accomplishments—from his childhood as a precocious math and science whiz to his experiences as a female student at MIT in the 1970s to his female-to-male transition in his forties, to his scientific work and role as teacher and mentor at Stanford. Barres recounts his early life—his interest in science, first manifested as a fascination with the mad scientist in Superman; his academic successes; and his gender confusion. Barres felt even as a very young child that he was assigned the wrong gender. After years of being acutely uncomfortable in his own skin, Barres transitioned from female to male.
As an undergraduate at MIT, Barres experienced discrimination, but it was after transitioning that he realized how differently male and female scientists are treated. This led him to become an advocate for gender equality in science.
Paul Boehmer attended his first Shakespearean play while in high school; he knew then that he was destined to become the classically trained actor he is today. Graduating with a master's degree, Paul was cast as Hamlet by the very stage actor who inspired his career path. A nod from the Universe he'd chosen aright! Paul has worked on Broadway and extensively in regional theater. Coinciding with another of his passions, sci-fi, Paul has been cast in various roles in many episodes of Star Trek. Paul's love of literature and learning led him by nature to his work as a narrator for audiobooks, his latest endeavour. Paul is married to the love of his life, Offir, and they live in Los Angeles with their two midnight-rambling tomcats, Dread and David.