Allucquére Rosanne “Sandy” Stone, the woman acknowledged as the founder of academic transgender studies, started out her career as a lab researcher and traveling “feral filmmaker” who talked professors into allowing her to audit their classes. After finally earning a graduate degree she settled into work as a recording engineer, working with artists like Jimi Hendrix and dressing in a long black cape. Her participation in a feminist recording collective where she lived for four years was personally called out by Janice Raymond in her book The Transsexual Empire, sparking the salvo that would inspire Stone’s own essay, The Empire Strikes Back, considered the seminal transgender studies text.
Stone now teaches and studies media, theorizing on – among other things – technology and the shifting role of academia. A video of her speaking at the European Graduate School where she now teaches (along with several other universities) is available here. She also writes and creates gallery installations to illustrate her theories.