A DES-victim and hero celebrated

Alan Turing to be the face on the new £50 banknote

Homosexual acts were criminal offences in the United Kingdom in the 1950s and Alan Turing was charged with “gross indecency” under Section 11 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1885. Brought to trial on 31 March 1952, he was convicted and given a choice between imprisonment and probation. His probation would be conditional on his agreement to undergo hormonal physical changes designed to reduce libido. He accepted the option of injections of what was then called stilboestrol (also known as diethylstilbestrol or DES), a synthetic oestrogen; this feminization of his body was continued for the course of one year. The treatment rendered Turing impotent and caused breast tissue to form, fulfilling in the literal sense Turing’s prediction that “no doubt I shall emerge from it all a different man, but quite who I’ve not found out”.

Selected Press Releases

  • Alan Turing, World War II code-breaker castrated for being gay, is the face of Britain’s £50 note, CNN Business July 15, 2019 – Alan Turing belongs on the UK’s £50 note; now put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill, CNN Opinion, July 16, 2019.
  • Alan Turing is crowned the most iconic figure of the 20th centurydailymail, 6 February 2019.
  • Pardon all of the estimated 49,000 men who, like Alan Turing, were convicted of consenting same-sex relations under the British “gross indecency” law (only repealed in 2003), and also all the other men convicted under other UK anti-gay lawschange.org, Feb 10, 2015.
  • The Castration of Alan Turing, Britain’s Code-Breaking WWII Herothedailybeast, 11.29.14.
  • Alan Turings name restored with film about his work, life and identity,
    oddonion, November 14, 2014.
  • Budget 2014: Alan Turing Institute to lead big data research,
    oddonion, March 19, 2014.
  • The Imitation Game, based on the real life story of Alan Turingdesdaughter, 2015/02/14.
  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queentelegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turinepetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Alan Turing: Inquest’s suicide verdict ‘not supportable’BBC Radio Science Unit, 26 June 2012.
  • ALAN TURING AND HIS MACHINES – FRESH INSIGHTS INTO THE ENIGMAindependent.co.uk, 14 June 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apologyradar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petitionBBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war herotelegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
DES DIETHYLSTILBESTROL RESOURCES

Alan Turing to be the face on the new £50 banknote

Castrated with DES for being gay, Alan Turing will appear on the new £50 polymer note

15 July 2019 – Today, Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney, announced that Alan Turing will appear on the new £50 polymer note. Making the announcement at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, the Governor also revealed the imagery depicting Alan Turing and his work that will be used for the reverse of the note. The new polymer £50 note is expected to enter circulation by the end of 2021. BOE news release.

“We want to represent as best as possible all aspects of diversity within the country, from race, religion, creed, sexual orientation, disability and beyond. What we have today is a celebration of one of the greatest mathematicians and scientists in the United Kingdom and not just this country’s history but world history.”

“Turing was homosexual and was posthumously pardoned by the Queen, having been convicted of gross indecency for his relationship with a man. His legacy continues to have an impact on both science and society today.”

Turing was found guilty of gross indecency and had to decide between going to prison or undergoing chemical castration. He chose the latter, a horrifying treatment that involved (DES) hormonal injections.

“I hope it will serve as a stark and rightfully painful reminder of what we lost in Turing, and what we risk when we allow that kind of hateful ideology to win.”

“It is almost impossible to put into words the difference that Alan Turing made to society, but perhaps the most poignant example is that his work is estimated to have shortened the war by four years and saved up to 21 million lives. And yet the way he was treated afterwards remains a national embarrassment and an example of society at its absolute worst.”

Selected Press Releases

  • Alan Turing, World War II code-breaker castrated for being gay, is the face of Britain’s £50 note, CNN Business July 15, 2019 – Alan Turing belongs on the UK’s £50 note; now put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill, CNN Opinion, July 16, 2019.
  • Alan Turing is crowned the most iconic figure of the 20th centurydailymail, 6 February 2019.
  • Pardon all of the estimated 49,000 men who, like Alan Turing, were convicted of consenting same-sex relations under the British “gross indecency” law (only repealed in 2003), and also all the other men convicted under other UK anti-gay lawschange.org, Feb 10, 2015.
  • The Castration of Alan Turing, Britain’s Code-Breaking WWII Herothedailybeast, 11.29.14.
  • Alan Turings name restored with film about his work, life and identity,
    oddonion, November 14, 2014.
  • Budget 2014: Alan Turing Institute to lead big data research,
    oddonion, March 19, 2014.
  • The Imitation Game, based on the real life story of Alan Turingdesdaughter, 2015/02/14.
  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queentelegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turinepetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Alan Turing: Inquest’s suicide verdict ‘not supportable’BBC Radio Science Unit, 26 June 2012.
  • ALAN TURING AND HIS MACHINES – FRESH INSIGHTS INTO THE ENIGMAindependent.co.uk, 14 June 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apologyradar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petitionBBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war herotelegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
DES DIETHYLSTILBESTROL RESOURCES

The Imitation Game, based on the real life story of Alan Turing, official UK trailer

Alan Turing had finally been granted a pardon for his conviction for homosexuality

In The Imitation Game, Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Alan Turing, the genius British mathematician, logician, cryptologist and computer scientist who led the charge to crack the German Enigma Code that helped the Allies win WWII. Turing went on to assist with the development of computers at the University of Manchester after the war, but was prosecuted by the UK government in 1952 for homosexual acts which the country deemed illegal.

More about the movie

  • Alan Turings name restored with film about his work, life and identity,
    oddonion, ovember 14, 2014.
  • Budget 2014: Alan Turing Institute to lead big data research,
    oddonion, March 19, 2014.

More about Alan Turing posthumous pardon

  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queen, telegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turin, epetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Government rejects a pardon for computer genius Alan Turing, the guardian, 7 February 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apology, radar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petition, BBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war hero, telegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
Even more
  • Pardon all of the estimated 49,000 men who, like Alan Turing, were convicted of consenting same-sex relations under the British “gross indecency” law (only repealed in 2003), and also all the other men convicted under other UK anti-gay laws, change.org, Feb 10, 2015.
  • Our posts tagged Alan Turing, who was chemically castrated by means of DES in 1952.
  • Video published on 27 Jan 2015 by UICC channel.
  • Watch more media videos on @DES_Journal YouTube channel.

Behind Alan Turing’s Machines

Fresh insights into the enigma

Alan Turing and his machines - fresh insights into the enigmaAlan Turing avoided prison by agreeing to a now unthinkable condition of probation: chemical castration. He was forced to take Stilboestrol (DES)

Read Alan Turing and his machines – fresh insights into the enigma.

More about Alan Turing posthumous pardon

  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queen, telegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turin, epetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Government rejects a pardon for computer genius Alan Turing, the guardian, 7 February 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apology, radar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petition, BBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war hero, telegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
More DES DiEthylStilbestrol Resources

Codebreaker Alan Turing’s ‘suicide’ in Doubt

Alan Turing was forced to take DES…

Codebreaker Alan Turing's 'suicide' in doubtAlan Turing, a mathematical genius and codebreaker born 100 years who was forced to take DES

Read Alan Turing: Inquest’s suicide verdict ‘not supportable’.

More about Alan Turing posthumous pardon

  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queen, telegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turin, epetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Government rejects a pardon for computer genius Alan Turing, the guardian, 7 February 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apology, radar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petition, BBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war hero, telegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
More DES DiEthylStilbestrol Resources

Alan Turing Cyber-Legacy praised by GCHQ Director

Iain Lobban said there were “enduring lessons” to be drawn from the work of Alan Turing

Alan Turing image

Alan Turing was arrested on 7 February 1952 for his affair with a young man.

He was obliged to undertake injections of DES (stilboestrol in the UK) intended to render him asexual…

He only became famous decades after his death. GCHQ director Iain Lobban said there were “enduring lessons” to be drawn from the work of Alan Turing.

Read GCHQ praises Turing cyber-legacy.

More about Alan Turing posthumous pardon

  • Alan Turing granted Royal pardon by the Queen, telegraph, 24 Dec 2013.
  • Grant a pardon to Alan Turin, epetitions, Closing:23/11/2012.
  • Government rejects a pardon for computer genius Alan Turing, the guardian, 7 February 2012.
  • How Alan Turing Finally Got a Posthumous Apology, radar, September 17, 2009.
  • PM apology after Turing petition, BBC News, 11 September 2009.
  • Gordon Brown: I’m proud to say sorry to a real war hero, telegraph, 10 Sep 2009.
DES DiEthylStilbestrol Resources