“Trans” reviews and interviews

“Trans” reviews and interviews

My first book, “Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality”, was published by OneWorld in July 2021. It was an immediate bestseller and named by the Times, Spectator and Observer as one of their books of 2021. The paperback came out on May 5th 2022. It includes an entirely new foreword and afterword. An audiobook edition is also available, read by me.

When “Trans” came out, it was reviewed by a wide range of outlets and I embarked on a whirlwind of interviews for YouTube channels, podcasts and radio shows. If you’re considering whether to take out a subscription to my newsletter, Joyce Activated, you can read what reviewers thought and watch or hear me being interviewed on a wide range of outlets, in order to get a sense of how I think and where I’m coming from.

Interviews and podcasts (reverse chronological order)

The Henrik Beckheim podcast; December 25th 2023
Henrik is a podcaster living in Oslo, Norway – the country with the world’s most lax gender self-ID law (kids can change their legal sex from age six). His podcast covers a wide range of issues about society, culture and philosophy. He was alerted to the huge increase in the number of children wanting gender drugs and surgeries by a psychologist whistleblower. I was pleased to have the opportunity to talk to a partially Norwegian audience, albeit in English.

Heretics with Andrew Gold; December 28th 2023
Gold is a former BBC journalist who got interested in cults and built a large podcast following on the subject. His new series looks at cult-like behaviour in other places. It was a lively and wide-ranging conversation, and it was good to talk about why sex differences aren’t just a matter of primary and secondary sex characteristics – so-called “bikini medicine”.

You Must Be Some Kind of Therapist; January 8th 2024
This is my second conversation with Stephanie Winn, a practising therapist in Portland, Oregon. I always like talking to people who understand the gender-identity contagion and have been trained in a psychological specialism, because I always learn a lot. In this conversation I was particularly interested by Stephanie’s explanation of ego-syntonic and ego-dystonic psychological ailments – essentially, ones where the person is, or respectively isn’t, miserable and therefore motivated to do something about their issues.

Zsófilter; December 7th 2023
Zsófi Balogh is a Hungarian lesbian and women’s-rights activist who has worked with women who have been physically and sexually abused by men. In this interview, we delve into why so many young women fall for transgender ideology, when women are the biggest victims of sex-denialism. Fun fact: it was recorded in October at the IEA, which kindly allowed us to use its recording room, directly before the evening panel event with Freda Wallace and Peter Tatchell I link to below.

The God Cast; December 4th 2023
In this short interview I talk with Anglican priest Alex Frost about how my Catholic upbringing has shaped my moral intuitions and language, and why trans ideology should be classified as one belief system among many. Watching back, I wish I’d done more to challenge the host’s myopic focus on trans-identifying men’s needs and desires, and explicitly asked him why he didn’t see the needs and desires of the half of humanity that is female. But I still really appreciated the conversation, especially since I think he received a fair bit of criticism for it from the “be kind” mob.

Better thinking; November 13th 2023
If you care about children’s mental health, this interview with Nesh Nikolic, an Australian clinical psychologist who bravely dissents from his profession’s capture by transactivism, is a must-watch. It was one of my favourite conversations of the year because I learned so much from it.

Does Transgender Ideology Threaten Liberal Values?; October 25th 2023
I was the only woman on a live panel with four men, including Freda Wallace and Peter Tatchell, at the Institute of Economic Affairs to discuss trans ideology’s threat to liberal values (oh, and women’s rights). I think I did a decent job; I also think Tatchell and Wallace made my points better than I did.

Gender-critical Story Hour (not the real title); November 13th 2023
I was interviewed earlier in the year by film-maker Travis Brown for his upcoming series, “Uncomfortable Truths”, and this clip is me responding to things said by affirming parents of little kids, as quoted in the “The Transgender Child”, one of the most insane and disturbing books I’ve ever come across – and that’s really saying something. 

Walk-Ins Welcome; October 19th 2023
I’ve been wanting to talk to Bridget Phetasy, the host of this lively show, for quite a while. She’s a very interesting woman, and I admire her for fighting her way back from alcoholism, and for her determination to find authenticity and sanity in America’s polarised and misogynistic political landscape. (Bonus – she asks what my biggest character flaw is, and I answer honestly!)

Enabled and Embedded: Transparency Podcast; October 10th 2023
This chatty podcast is hosted by two transmen, both called Aaron, and both of whom are well aware that they are and always will be female. It was really interesting to hear from them how they are regarded as transphobic by the latest generation of transactivists.

Australiana from the Spectator; 4th October 2023
We talked about many things in this interview, but what sticks out in my memory was our discussion of the utterly ludicrous rant from supposed-scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson on an episode of Triggernometry, in which he seriously suggested that women with bigger boobs are “more female”... (audio-only)

When does sex matter? The Law and Liberty podcast; 11th September 2023
The host of this podcast, Helen Dale, is a fascinating person: a successful author from Australia who is an expert on law and much else under the Roman Empire, and who is (unusually) qualified to practise law in both England and Scotland. She’s a rarity in another way too: she’s a solidly right-wing lesbian who has trenchant views on both the sex-denialism of the trans camp and the evolution-denialism of many feminists. This was a joint interview with my colleague Maya Forstater of Sex Matters. As you’d expect from Dale’s background, we talked a lot about the law. As always, great fun to talk to someone who knows stuff I don’t. (audio-only)

Feminist Current: a conversation with Meghan Murphy; August 23rd 2023
This is my second conversation with Meghan, one of the bravest and most influential Canadian voices standing against gender ideology today. We talked about whether and why UK Labour is slowly rowing back from trans insanity; and what Matt Walsh gets right – and wrong. I first met Meghan when reporting for my book shortly before covid, and it’s always great fun to catch up with her. (audio-only)

Trish Wood is Critical; August 19th 2023
My segment in this episode of the podcast of this veteran Canadian reporter starts at 16 minutes 20 seconds. It’s my second chat with her, and my great enjoyment in our conversations is made bitter-sweet by the reminder of how much journalism has gone downhill since the days when people like Trish took out their notebooks, went out in search of stories and would only have been inspired to push harder by being told that any subject was off-limits. (audio-only)

Bajada Dialogues; August 16th 2023
This quirky podcast involves conversations with whoever the host, Jason Bajada, feels like chatting with. I enjoyed it! (Audio-only).

The War for Reality with Jordan Peterson; August 10th 2023
The link above is to the abridged version posted on YouTube, which just a little while before this interview was recorded had taken down our first interview because of “hate speech” – we think our referring to Ellen/Elliot Page as a woman. You can watch the full version on X/Twitter. We covered, among other things, the sexual desires that motivate many men to identify as women – and the Irish government’s plans to criminalise ordinary statements about the two sexes. Jordan said many insightful things in this conversation, and I think it was one of the best interviews I’ve done.

The Poetry of Reality with Richard Dawkins; July 29th 2023
This involved painful suppression of my desire to fangirl: “The Selfish Gene” is one of my most-admired books, and when my own book was just a twinkle in my eye and a literary agent (who later dropped me for being controversial) asked what book I would most aspire to model mine on in style, tone and structure, it’s the book I named. Richard was one of the first people to give me a blurb for my book, and hearing this from my editor provoked a fair amount of squealing and hyperventilating, and also enormously impressed my father, who admired Richard’s work as much as I did.

Jerm Warfare; July 29th 2023
Jeremy Nell is a South African cartoonist, podcaster and talk-radio host. We talked about origins of trans ideology, and in particular the role of shame in trans identification – women’s shame at their physical weakness, rapeability and positioning as the one of the two sexes seen as sexed. (audio only)

The Megyn Kelly Show; July 19th 2023
My politics are very different from Kelly’s, but I’ve admired her for years for her fearless commitment to doing actual journalism, and willingness to talk across the partisan divide in a country where far too few are willing to do so. I also find Kelly’s genuine outrage at the way transactivism harms women’s outrage inspiring and heartening.

A conversation with Peter Boghossian; July 3rd 2023
Boghossian is, among other things, co-author of a book called “How to Have Impossible Conversations”, and he spends a lot of his time doing “street epistemology” – asking ordinary people out and about to think through moral conundrums. Our chat ranged very widely, but one part was clipped and has been viewed several hundred thousand times: a few minutes in which I explain how parents who have transitioned a child become implacable enemies of everyone else’s sex-based rights because they will never be able to admit they made a catastrophic mistake.  

Public, an interview by Mia Ashton; May 29th 2023
This interview was particularly important to me because I’m a big admirer of Public, which was founded by iconoclast Michael Shellenberger and has in the past year or so increasingly focused on the harms done by trans ideology to American democracy. And I’m also a fan of Mia Ashton (@crymiariver) for her fantastic threads on the history of trans medicine and the analogies with previous medical scandals and social contagions.

The Bigger Picture Genspect conference; April 27th 2023
I was honoured to be asked to give the keynote address at the first-ever Genspect conference, in Killarney, Ireland. I talked about what happens when ideology is allowed to replace the medical ethos, as has happened in gender medicine, and how evidence-based care goes out the window as a result.

IEA Book Club; April 18th 2023
This was a “fireside chat” with Marc Glendening, head of cultural affairs at the Institute for Economic Affairs, a libertarian think-tank in London. A notable feature was a “discussant” – another staffer at the think-tank, who disagreed with my position on libertarian grounds. I think I roundly demolished his arguments, but that’s for you to decide! In any case, what a pleasure to have a debate rather than be told that only bigots do such things.

Maiden, Mother, Matriarch with Louise Perry; February 26th 2023
Louise is author of “The Case Against the Sexual Revolution”, a brilliantly thought-provoking book about the collateral damage caused by the sex-denialist strain within women’s liberation. We spoke about the importance of sex differences in law and policy, the origins of gender-identity ideology, whether or not gender-critical feminists have “won” in the UK, and the relationship between feminism and the Left.

The Story Box; February 5th 2023
I enjoyed the intriguing premise of this podcast: talk to people who have had unusual experiences or done unusual things, and use their stories to illuminate wider issues.

Triggernometry; January 8th 2023
I’m often asked which interview I recommend people send to friends or relatives who know nothing about the sex’n’gender debate. This interview with comedians Francis Foster and Konstantin Kisin is my usual answer.

The New Flesh podcast; December 11th 2022
This lively interview with Australians Ricky and Jon was a great chance for me to find out more about what’s happening in Australia, and to spread the word beyond the UK.

UnHerd live debate with Julie Bindel; December 8th 2022
This event was inspired by the fallout within “gender-critical” feminism sparked by the decision by me and Maya Forstater to attend Posie Parker’s Let Women Speak rally in Brighton earlier in the autumn. Julie, one of my favourite authors (and people), feels strongly that too-close association with women who disavow left-wing politics is unwise for those of us trying to defeat transactivism, but was willing to engage in a friendly and robust debate about it.

Parallax Views; November 14th 2022
In this episode of the culture podcast of libertarian think-tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, I was interviewed by Marc Glendening about the origins of the trans movement and its impact on civil liberties.

Marshall Matters for the Spectator; October 24th 2022
I really enjoyed talking to Winston Marshall for the Spectator podcast, not only because he’s an excellent and well-informed interviewer, but because it’s a podcast that gets what I’m saying out past the already knowledgeable GC bubble.

LGB Alliance conference; October 21st 2022
This is a panel discussion on lies, gender identity and stereotypes between Malcolm Clark of LGB Alliance; Tanya Carter of Safe Schools Alliance; Kate Grimes, the ex-CEO of an NHS trust; detransitioner Sinead Watson; and me.

The trans teen trend: a case of social contagion?; October 15th 2022
This was a panel discussion at the Battle of Ideas with Jennie Bristow, a sociologist at Canterbury Christ Church University; James Esses, co-founder of Thoughtful Therapists; transwoman Katy Jon Went; with chair Claire Fox, director of Academy of Ideas and an independent peer. The most memorable bit came near the end, when a young American woman stood up, said her name was Michael, she was a man, and we were all guilty of causing trans kids to kill themselves because of our misgendering. It was immensely satisfying to be able to say in a public place what I think of that scaremongering and emotional blackmail.

VatorNews; October 5th 2022
A joint interview with Maya Forstater, hosted by Bambi Francisco of Vator, a platform for innovation and investment in health care. It was interesting to see Silicon Valley insiders start to wake up to what’s happening in gender medicine.

Jordan Peterson: Trans—When Ideology Meets Reality; August 22nd 2022
Far and away the biggest interview I’d done to date. I really enjoyed the conversation, despite the recording happening on July 19th, the hottest day in London on record. That meant sitting in a room with studio lights overhead, the windows closed and the fan turned off for noise reasons. And it took me hours and hours to get home, as most trains had been cancelled because of the heat warping the tracks.
I can honestly say that more people since have said: “I saw/heard you on Jordan Peterson” than have mentioned every other interview I’ve ever done put together. And I learned a lot from him! He’s a fascinating guy who knows a bunch of stuff I don’t.

Spiked Online podcast: Have we reached peak trans?; August 11th 2022
My second conversation with Brendan O’Neill (he interviewed me shortly after my book came out, a year earlier). A joy to speak with someone who doesn’t seek to police pronouns, and really understands the subject.

Online Speakeasy: How to speak up without getting cancelled; July 12th 2022
I was interviewed by Jan Macvarish of the Free Speech Union for a “speakeasy” with members. These interesting and frank discussions are recorded and go online afterwards for everyone.

Fact and Fiction: Celebrating Those Who Have Dared Publish; July 9th 2022
I took part in a delightful morning arranged by Stephanie Davies-Arai of Transgender Trend, which brought together people who have managed to get sex-realist books into print, and coped with the conseqences. The event was a fundraiser for Transgender Trend and was later released in five parts. Kathleen Stock and I are part 4, and the panel at large is part 5.

You Must Be Some Kind of Therapist; June 27th 2022
This was an unusual interview, because it was essentially me being interviewed by Stephanie Winn, a practising therapist in Portland, Oregon. At the time I had been asked by people in the UK for evidence of harm from places that had introduced bans on so-called gender-identity conversion therapy – and I knew that Stephanie had been reported to her licensing board and gone through a painful investigation before being cleared. So I asked if she would be willing to tell me about it, and host it on her podcast.

True Thirty: The Reality of Trans, Part 1 and Part 2; June 8th and 15th 2022
An interview with Joey Dumont, an Australian whose podcast True Thirty takes a slow-journalism approach to fraught issues. Our conversation was so wide-ranging that he decided to release it in two parts.

‘Sex Realism’ Versus ‘Sex Denialism’: Is the Tide Finally Turning Against Gender Ideology?; June 5th 2022
A conversation with the first person who ever published what I wanted to say about trans issues, a man to whom I will always be grateful for stopping the fury and befuddlement making me explode—the wonderful Jon Kay. For the Quillette podcast.

Wine with Women; May 25th 2022
The interview with Helen Staniland that launched a thousand claims that I’m a genocidaire. Watch for yourself and decide whether I (a) want to round trans people up for transport and extermination or (b) want to do as much as possible to slow and eventually stop a social contagion that is harming young people, and to limit the number of people who adhere to the sex-denialist ideology and therefore seek to destroy other people’s rights.

Calmversations: Speaking Truth to Gender; April 29th 2022
Stephanie Davies-Arai and I, both now repeat guests, join Benjamin Boyce, who has done more than anyone else to document trans ideology as it spreads.

Unleashed: The Game-Changers, with Paola Diana; January 29th 2022
Diana kicks off the second season of her series by interviewing me about the harms done to children by gender-identity ideology, the impact on women’s rights and what I think needs to happen in British politics to bring this inglorious episode to an end.

Keep talking with Dan Riley; October 29th 2021
In this interview I discuss the sterilisation of children, the cultural incentives that encourage kids to question their sex, the regret that many have after surgery and the public shaming of those who disagree with this activist ideology.

The Electric Agora; October 15th 2021
Daniel Kaufman, editor of the online philosophy magazine EA, and I talk about the history of transgenderism, how we got to a position where man and woman have become dematerialised identities, the use of postmodernist deconstruction in transactivist discourse, and my predictions for both Britain and America.

Conservative Party Conference in Manchester; October 3rd 2021
Journalist Julia Hartley Brewer interviewed me for an audience of party members, MPs and peers.

Baroness Emma Nicholson’s webinar for parliamentarians; September 24th 2021
Lady Nicholson has been working for some time to the eyes of MPs and peers to the harms of gender-identity ideology. For this session I was among the guests, with Sonia Appleby, Kellie-Jay Keen (Posie Parker) and Graham Linehan.

Coleman Hughes: Demystifying Gender Dysphoria; September 24th 2021
Brilliant young American thinker Coleman Hughes, who remembers the early signs of the gender-identity revolution from his teens, asks me some questions he’s been waiting to ask since he was 16.

The Femsplainers Podcast - What if Mother Nature Used He/Him Pronouns? September 21st 2021
Danielle Crittenden, the Femsplainer-in-chief, interviewed me about the trend to define sex by “gender identity” and not biology, and how that is leading to the erasure of women’s rights on many important fronts. We also explored why so few people dare challenge this radical redefinition of what it means to be a woman, or indeed man.

Subversive: The Trans Takeover; September 19th 2021
Writer and cultural critic Alex Kaschuta invited me on for a wide-ranging conversation that covered trans medicine, John Money and the tragic case of David Reimer, how the UK became “TERF island”, the plight of “trans widows”, gender as performance or “sexed soul”, the huge difference between trans-identified males and trans-identified females, and much, much more.

Gender: A Wider Lens; September 17th 2021
Gender-critical therapists Stella O’Malley and Sasha Ayad went into depth in this podcast in so many ways. We talked about traditional cultures’ third genders, and how citing them as “trans” identities is a type of cultural colonialism. We also reflected on how America’s tendency to double down on bad policies bodes ill for women’s rights and children’s wellbeing; and on the way in which, with luck, a grassroots feminist resurgence is bringing policy in Britain back onto a more sensible path.

In Conversation with Iain Martin; September 10th 2021
The editor of Reaction and I discuss the impact of gender-identity ideology on British politics.

Womens Voices; September 1st 2021
Genevieve Gluck, the creator of this radical-feminist podcast, asks me about the notion that biological sex is a social construct, the smear campaign against me and the powerful lobbying effort that has pushed gender-identity ideology onto the political agenda in many countries with unprecedented speed.

The Same Drugs; September 1st 2021
Canadian feminist campaigner Meghan Murphy and I discussed the origins of transsexualism, and why the assault on reality matters so much to women.

Benjamin Boyce: Calmversations; August 30th 2021
This is my third discussion with Boyce, and as always he found a new direction to take things, and new questions to ask in his ongoing search for a synthesis of the various strands of thinking about gender in the 21st century.

Chicago’s Morning Answer; August 3rd 2021
A live interview on American talk radio, with particular emphasis on what is going on in schools.

The Mess We’re In; August 1st 2021
Graham Linehan, Arty Morty, Helen Staniland and I discussed the reaction to the book, and what we all see coming next.

Savage Minds Podcast with Julian Vigo; July 29th 2021
I go into detail with feminist author and journalist Julian Vigo regarding some of the choices I made in my book regarding what to include and exclude, and the trickiest decision of all: why did I (sometimes) use pronouns of choice?

Knight Tube; July 29th 2021
Sceptic and atheist Stephen Knight and I discussed why so many so-called sceptics have fallen hook, line and sinker for a cult-like belief system.

Spiked Online Podcast: The trans war on reality; July 29th 2021
I joined the editor of Spiked, Brendan O’Neill, to discuss the totalitarian nature of trans ideology, the abuse experienced by detransitioners, and the societal and scientific reasons for excluding males from women’s sports, prisons and changing rooms.

The Ayaan Hirsi Ali Podcast; July 22nd 2021
One of my personal heroes interviewed me about the rapid rise of gender-identity ideology, the differences between America and Britain, and where I see it all going.

Sex Matters: In Maya Forstater; July 22nd 2021
The first-ever Sex Matters event, live online for Super Supporters and available to watch back for everyone.

Free Speech Nation with Andrew Doyle; July 17th 2021
In this long and lively interview, Andrew and I went into detail on many aspects of gender-identity ideology, in particular the multiple definitions of “gender”.

The Critic podcast: Debunking Trans ideology; July 13th 2021
An interview with freelance journalist Jo Bartosch that focuses on the ways in which transactivism harms young gay people.

A Woman’s Place is keeping it real; July 13th 2021
In this live digital pre-launch event, Guardian journalist Susanna Rustin interviewed me about why I wrote “Trans” and how it fits into a broader feminist resurgence.

The Evening Standard: A tour de force; July 12th 2021
This painstaking book is a must-read for anyone looking for a deeper understanding of trans activism, says Stella O’Malley.

The Times Book of the Week: Women exist! The facts of biology trump ideology; July 16th 2021
This rigorous and brave book nails the absurd idea that sex is just a “social construct”, says David Aaronovitch.

The Telegraph: This is the book you need to read about trans activism; July 18th 2021
Helen Joyce’s new book is a jaw-dropping look at a world gone mad, says Kathleen Stock.

The Guardian: Trans by Helen Joyce; Material Girls by Kathleen Stock; July 18th 2021
Two weighty books on the debate around gender-critical feminism and transgender rights strike different tones, says Gaby Hinsliff.

“Someone Has to Be the Someone”, by Jane Clare Jones, The Radical Notion; Issue 4, Summer 2021
The founding editor of this radical-feminist quarterly had a wide-ranging conversation with me about the impact of gender-identity ideology on feminism, the side-lining of embodied reality and reification of gender as an identity, the medical scandal of paediatric transitioning and much more.

The New York Times: Trans Rights and Gender Identity; September 7th 2021
“There is a difference between believing in ‘trans rights’ and believing in ‘gender-identity ideology’,” says Jesse Singal, a journalist who has done more than almost any other to cover trans issues intelligently and thoroughly. “That’s the subtly important distinction that fuels Helen Joyce’s ‘Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality’, a book that offers an intelligent, thorough rejoinder to an idea that has swept across much of the liberal world seemingly overnight.”

New Statesman: How to talk about trans rights; September 15th 2021
This is a joint review of “Trans” and Shon Faye’s “The Transgender Issue”. The author, Sophie McBain, really didn’t like “Trans”, describing my tone as “harsh”, “insensitive” and “unfortunate”, and recommending that anyone who finds it at all convincing immediately reads Faye’s book to correct their thinking.

New Statesman: Women are in a bigger fight than the suffragettes; September 29th 2021 (updated October 1st 2021 3:13pm)
In this interview with New Statesman staff writer Harry Lambert, I was able to explain my ideas without misrepresentation. It was commissioned to provide some balance to the one-sided review by Sophie McBain two weeks earlier.

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