Chapter 2 Summary

As the second chapter, “Matchmaker,” begins, Cal suggests that she might end up the most “famous hermaphrodite in history.” Cal explains how other hermaphrodites in history made money showing themselves to physicians. Cal’s own case was quite lucrative because “to the extent that fetal hormones affect brain chemistry and histology, I’ve got a male brain. But I was raised as a girl.” In spite of Cal’s “androgenized brain, there’s an innate feminine circularity in the story I have to tell.” To tell the story, she will have to take her reader back in time. It is Greece, 1922, and Desdemona Stephanides is in her silkworm cocoonery, which is “high on the slope of Mount Olympus.” Desdemona has lost her parents...

(The entire section is 517 words.)