A soft-spoken, middle-aged woman slides into a chair in a small, bare room at George Washington University's Speech and Hearing Center, then smiles at the clinician sitting across from her. After a few minutes of chitchat, they begin their hour-long session, during which the woman repeats sentences and answers seemingly random questions:
"Why do you go to school?"
"Why do we have stop lights?"
"Why do we use clothes hangers?"
As it turns out, it's not the answers that matter. It's the sound of those answers. The woman is transgender, and she is here to learn a new voice.
"We're not just changing their voice pitch," said...