It was learned in a 1981 outing by the British tabloid “News of The World” that model Caroline Tula Cossey was transgender, nearly costing her life and ending her marriage. At that time, this was unthinkable. The woman that so many men had spent untold hours sexualizing and fantasizing about was born to a male body. But it made good copy for the immoral degenerate publishing mogul Rudolph Murdock.
That was decades before Laverne Cox appeared on the Time’s cover in what was dubbed by mainstream cisgender media as the transgender tipping point.
Not to take anything away from Cox or the momentum she has added to our cause but Caroline Tula Cossey has been busy tipping that point for decades.
And it also occurred to me with the recent awards given to trans people for dedicated advocacy how little time they have spent in comparison in order to receive such a distinguished honorarium. It’s taken some time to write this story because visually Caroline Tula Cossey is just so compelling, but that’s just the beginning of the story.
This autobiography isn’t meant to be all encompassing, but I hope to shed some light on this fascinating woman with a compilation of three videos, links, and images. And it’s also interesting to note the difference between what was expected and accepted from the media during the 80’s and 90’s, and compare it to today’s standards.
Tula became engaged to Count Glauco Lasinio, an Italian advertising executive, who was the first man to date her knowing of her past. He encouraged her to petition for changes in the British law concerning transsexuals. The engagement ended, but her legal efforts continued for seven years, eventually reaching the European Court of Human Rights.
In 1985, Tula appeared extensively in the video for The Power Station’s “Some Like It Hot”. After breaking up with Lasinio, Tula met Elias Fattal, a Jewish businessman, who was unaware of her history until he proposed marriage on St Valentine’s Day 1988. When she told him, rather than rejecting her, he merely asked if she would convert to Judaism. She agreed. They were married on 21 May 1989, just weeks after the European Court of Human Rights decided legally to recognize Tula as a woman. They returned from their honeymoon to find that the News of the World had published a story on their wedding. Fattal’s family was angry and persuaded him to have the marriage annulled.
On 27 September 1990, the European Court overturned their decision on a British government appeal. (Later, the Gender Recognition Act 2004 was passed, giving transgender people in the United Kingdom means to change their legal sex.) Tula returned to modeling, which she had given up four years earlier.
In 1991, Tula released My Story, her second autobiography. In it she gave details of her transition and her unsuccessful battle with the European Commission. She was featured in the September 1991 issue of Playboy, in a pictorial, “The Transformation Of Tula”, as an acknowledged transsexual.
Tula married Canadian David Finch in 1992. They live together in Kennesaw near Atlanta. – Source Wikipedia
Another great source annierichards.com offers a personal glimpse into her life. It also interesting to note that during her June 2015 Playboy interview, that they made a point of saying that she came to them asking for the 1991 pictorial. Three video interviews featuring Caroline Tula Cossey pioneer model and actress and trans advocate. Enjoy, Rage and Praise.