Concept

Middlesex (novel)

Summary
Middlesex is a Pulitzer Prize–winning novel by Jeffrey Eugenides published in 2002. The book is a bestseller, with more than four million copies sold since its publication. Its characters and events are loosely based on aspects of Eugenides' life and observations of his Greek heritage. It is not an autobiography; unlike the protagonist, Eugenides is not intersex. The author decided to write Middlesex after reading the 1980 memoir Herculine Barbin and finding himself dissatisfied with its discussion of intersex anatomy and emotions. Primarily a coming-of-age story (Bildungsroman) and family saga, the 21st-century gender novel chronicles the effect of a mutated gene on three generations of a Greek family, causing momentous changes in the protagonist's life. According to scholars, the novel's main themes are nature versus nurture, rebirth, and the differing experiences of what society constructs as polar opposites, such as those found between men and women. It discusses the pur
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