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Cal's family background affects the way he feels about himself because his family caused the fact of his hermaphroditism. His grandparents, who fled Greece to flee the war just as Cal flees himself at every turn (until he meets Julie), are brother and sister who married because Eleutherios, Lefty, had convinced Desdamona that they should marry. This resulted in a defective gene that caused Cal her dual brain perceptions.
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