This site is the most comprehensive on the web devoted to trans history and biography. Well over 1200 persons worthy of note, both famous and obscure, are discussed in detail, and many more are mentioned in passing - especially in the year-end summaries (see links in right sidebar.)

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16 September 2015

20 trans/intersex persons in or from West Asia who changed things by example and/or achievement

  • Bahram Mir-djalali (1939 - ) Tehran surgeon, trained in Paris, has done over 1000 sex change surgeries. GVWW 
  • Fawziya Janahi (1962 - ) Bahraini lawyer who has represented trans men. GVWW
  • Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (1902 – 1989) issued a fatwa in 1983 to permit transsexual changes. GVWW
  • Eliezer Yehuda Waldenberg (1915 – 2006) Jerusalem Rabbi ruled in late 1960s that a post-operative transsexual has changed her halachic gender. GVWW
  • Muhammad Mehdi Kariminia wrote an Islamic PhD on transsexuality, published as Sex Change, From Legal and Islamic Jurisprudence Perspective, 2011. Newsarticle
A special mention for Yasmene Jabar, a US American, who set up the web sites Cafe Trans Arabi and the International Transsexual Sisterhood, the first to help trans women in west Asia. In 2005 she was involved in the Trans Eastern Conference (TEC) in Istanbul. GVWW

  1. Assurbanipal/Sardanapalos (685-627 BCE) Assyrian King fond of spending time with his wives dressed in female clothing and makeup.   
  2. Elagabalus (203 – 222) Roman Emperor from age 14 to 18, born of a Syrian dynasty. Reputed to do what would now be regarded as gay and trans. EN.Wikipedia    
  3. Lucy Hester Stanhope (1776 - 1939), niece of UK Prime Minister William Pitt, settled in Palestine and wore male Arabic dress.  Book     Book 
  4. Kobra (1909 - ?) Iranian who had transgender surgery in in 1927. Newsarticle
  5. A Ma'dan mustergil (1917–?) landowner and poet.  GVWW
  6. Rina Natan (1923 - ?) earliest known Israeli trans woman. Newsarticle
  7. Maryam Molkara (1950 - ) Iranian activist who persuaded Ayatollah Khomeini to issue a fatwa permitting gender changes. GVWW    EN.Wikipedia
  8. Bülent Ersoy (1952 - ) Turkish singer, actor. GVWW      EN.Wikipedia
  9. Charles Kane (1960 - ) Iraqi born businessman in London, changeback. GVWW
  10. Demet Demir (1961 - ) Turkish activist. First trans woman and the first person considered a prisoner of conscience by Amnesty International because of “sexual orientation”. Awarded 1997 Felip de Souza Award. GVWW
  11. ? (196? - ) a member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards served five years in the war with Iraq. Her operation was paid for by a Muslim cleric whom she had worked for as a secretary, and later married. Newsarticle.
  12. Saman Arastu (1967 - ) Iranian actor. Newsarticle
  13. Sharon Cohen/Dana International (1972 - ) Israeli singer, Eurovision winner. GVWW     EN.Wikipedia
  14. Hussain Rabie (1974 - ) Bahraini para-athletic shot-putter and discus thrower GVWW
  15. Aderet (1976 - ) Israeli singer GVWW     EN.Wikipedia    
  16. Pooya Mohseni (1978 - ) Iranian actress in New York. GVWW
  17. Rüzgar Erkoçlar (1986 - ) Turkish actor GVWW
  18. Yuval Topper-Erez (1988 - ) Israeli trans man parent of two. Newsarticle
  19. Leyla Çalışkan (199? - ) Turkish basketball scout and trainer. Newsarticle
  20. Michelle Denishevich (199? - ) Turkish news reporter. Newsarticle

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