Genderqueer

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Genderqueer (GQ; alternatively non-binary) is a catch-all category for gender identities other than man and woman, thus outside of the gender binary and cisnormativity.[1] Genderqueer people may identify as one or more of the following:

  • having an overlap of, or indefinite lines between, gender identity and sexual and romantic orientation.[2]
  • two or more genders (bigender, trigender, pangender);
  • without a gender (nongendered, genderless, agender; neutrois);
  • moving between genders or with a fluctuating gender identity (genderfluid);[3]
  • third gender or other-gendered; includes those who do not place a name to their gender;[4]

Some genderqueer people[5][6] also desire physical modification or hormones to suit their preferred expression. Many genderqueer people see gender and sex as separable aspects of a person and sometimes identify as a male woman, a female man, or a male/female/intersex genderqueer person.[7] It can be helpful for some people to consider gender and sex as two separate things.[8] Sex can be summarized as male, female, or intersex, where gender can include, but are in no way limited to, boy/girl, man/woman, bigender, agender, non-binary, et cetera. Gender identity is defined as one's internal sense of being a woman, man, both, or neither, while sexual orientation refers to an individual's enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction to others.[6] As such, genderqueer people may have a variety of sexual orientations, as with transgender and cisgender people.[9]

In addition to being an umbrella term, genderqueer has been used as an adjective to refer to any people who transgress distinctions of gender, regardless of their self-defined gender identity, i.e. those who "queer" gender, expressing it non-normatively.[10] Androgynous is frequently used as a descriptive term for people in this category, though genderqueer people may express a combination of masculinity and femininity, or neither, in their gender expression and not all identify as androgynous. However, the term has been applied by those describing what they see as a gender ambiguity.[11]

Genderqueer was one of 56 gender identity options added to Facebook in February 2014.[12]

Gender terms[edit]

Some genderqueer people prefer to use gender-neutral pronouns such as one, ze, sie, hir, co, ey or singular "they", "their" and "them", while others prefer the conventional binary pronouns "her" or "him". Some genderqueer people prefer to be referred to alternately as he and she, and some prefer to use only their name and not use pronouns at all.[13]

Many genderqueer people prefer additional neutral language, such as the title "Mx" instead of Mr. or Ms.[14]

In July 2012, Gopi Shankar, a gender activist and a student at The American College in Madurai coined the regional terms for genderqueer (Tamil: பால்புதுமையினர்) people in Tamil during Asia's first genderqueer Pride Parade. According to Shankar, Tamil is the only language besides English that has been given names for all the genders identified so far.[15][16][17][18][19][20]

Agender and neutrois[edit]

Agender (from 'a-', meaning "without", "a lack of", and 'gender') (also genderless, non-gendered, ungendered[21][22]) is a person who identifies as 'having no gender' or 'without gender identity'.[23] It may fall under the genderqueer or transgender[24][25][26] (lit. being "beyond gender") umbrella. It is related to, and may overlap with the gender identity of neutrois, defined as either a neutral or neither gender, or sometimes no gender.[27]

Neutrois is a gender identity that is neutral or null. Neutrois people may also describe themselves variously as genderless, neither male nor female, or androgynous, or possibly agender,[27] the lack of a gender, a term with which there is a degree of overlap, although neutrois tends to cover a neutral gender identity, whereas agender tends to cover the lack of a gender.[original research?][citation needed]

Neutrois people may be assigned either male or female at birth, and can also be intersex or dyadic. Many have gender dysphoria, much like transsexual people. The term "neutrois" was coined in 1995 by H. A. Burnham, who created the word to describe hir gender and others with the same feelings.[28][29]

People self-identifying as neutrois are part of what gender theorist Anne Enke calls the "ever-expanding social category" of transgender people. This category includes a very broad range of identities which do not conform to traditional gender norms. However, Enke notes that people who identify with any of these positions may not necessarily self-identify as transgender.[30]

Neutrois and agender, are two of 50 available "custom" genders on Facebook, which were added on February 13, 2014.[31] It is also available as a gender option on OkCupid since 17 November 2014.[32]

Gender neutrality[edit]

Main article: Gender neutrality

Gender neutrality is the movement to end discrimination of gender altogether in society through means of gender-neutral language, the end of sex segregation and other means.

Pride flag[edit]

Genderqueer and non-binary pride flag

Designed by Marilyn Roxie and completed in 2011, the genderqueer and non-binary pride flag composes of three horizontal stripes and is designed to complement existing gender and sexuality flags.

Lavender stands as a mixture of blue and pink, traditionally associated with men and women, and so represents androgyny as well as 'queerness', as it has long-standing connections to non-heterosexual communities.[33] White stands for agender, reflecting the use of white on the transgender flag for 'gender neutral', and dark chartreuse green stands as the inverse of lavender, representing all whose identity is outside or without connection to the gender binary.[34]

In 2013, Roxie clarified that the similarity shared between the colours of the pride flag and those of the Women's Social and Political Union, a United Kingdom suffrage organisation, was unintentional.[35]

Out genderqueer people[edit]

  • Justin Vivian Bond, American entertainer, identifies as neither male or female, but trans. Bond prefers the title "Mx" and the pronoun "V".[36]
  • Jiz Lee, a pornographic performer, stated in a personal blog post to have become more candid about being genderqueer at about age 29.[37][non-primary source needed]
  • Richard O'Brien, a British actor and filmmaker who lives in New Zealand, identifies as third gender and takes estrogen.[38]
  • Chris Pureka, an American folk music singer-songwriter, came out publicly as genderqueer in a 2005 interview with Off Our Backs.[39]
  • Ruby Rose, Australian model and DJ, came out as gender-fluid in 2014. She identifies as both male and female and prefers female pronouns.[40]
  • Gopi Shankar, a gender activist and a student of The American College in Madurai.[41][42] Shankar wrote the first book on gender-variant people in Tamil[43] and ze is the founder of Srishti Madurai genderqueer group.[15][18][44][45][46]
  • Rae Spoon, a Canadian singer-songwriter, identified as a trans man for many years before adopting a gender-neutral identity in 2012.[47][48][49]
  • Hida Viloria, American writer and intersex activist, speaks about being genderqueer in the 1999 film Gendernauts. As the New York Times film review stated, "Hida Viloria, a voluble hermaphrodite with exquisite cheekbones, can pass effortlessly from exquisite femininity to sullen machismo. Having lived credibly as a woman and as a man, Hida... now seems happiest occupying 'the middle ground' between them."[50]

Discrimination and legal status[edit]

Asia's first Genderqueer Pride Parade at Madurai with Anjali Gopalan

The majority of respondents to the National Transgender Discrimination Survey chose "A gender not listed here." The Q3GNLH (Question 3 Gender Not Listed Here) respondents reported being 9 percentage-points (33%) more likely to forgo healthcare due to fear of discrimination than the general sample (36% compared to 27%). 76% reported being unemployed, 90% reported experiencing anti-trans bias at work, and 43% reported having attempted suicide.[51]

Australia[edit]

First reported in January 2003, Australians can use "X" as their gender. Alex MacFarlane is believed to be the first person in Australia to obtain a birth certificate recording sex as indeterminate, and the first Australian passport with an 'X' sex marker in 2003.[52][53][54][54][55][56] This is stated by the West Australian to be on the basis of a challenge by MacFarlane, using an indeterminate birth certificate issued by the State of Victoria. The West Australian newspaper reported in January 2003 that the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade "had decided to accommodate people whose birth certificates recorded their sex as indeterminate ... Alex is also believed to be the first Australian issued with a birth certificate acknowledging a gender other than male or female. Alex's says “indeterminate - also known as intersex”. It was issued in Alex's birth State of Victoria, which unlike WA, changed its policy to allow the category".[52]

Government policy between 2003 and 2011 was to issue passports with an 'X' marker only to people who could "present a birth certificate that notes their sex as indeterminate".[56][57]

In 2011, the Australian Passport Office introduced new guidelines for issuing of passports with a new gender, and broadened availability of an X descriptor to all individuals with documented "indeterminate" sex.[58][59] The revised policy stated that "sex reassignment surgery is not a prerequisite to issue a passport in a new gender. Birth or citizenship certificates do not need to be amended."[60]

Australian Commonwealth guidelines on the recognition of sex and gender, published in June 2013, now extend the use of an 'X' gender marker to any adult who chooses that option, in all dealings with the Commonwealth government and its agencies. The option is being introduced over a three year period. The guidelines also clarify that the federal government collects data on gender, rather than sex.[61]

Also in 2013, people with non-binary gender identities received formal protection from discrimination, with the addition of a new attribute "gender identity" to anti-discrimination law.[62][63]

Norrie May-Welby is popularly - but erroneously - often regarded as the first person in the world to obtain officially indeterminate, unspecified or "genderless" status.[31][64][65] May-Welby became the first transsexual person in Australia to pursue a legal status of neither a man nor a woman, in 2010.[31][64][66][67] That status is subject to an appeal by the State of New South Wales.[65]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Usher, Raven, ed. (2006). North American Lexicon of Transgender Terms. San Francisco. ISBN 9781879194625. OCLC 184841392. 
  2. ^ Brill, Stephanie A.; Pepper, Rachel (28 June 2008). The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals. San Francisco: Cleis Press. ISBN 9781573443180. OCLC 227570066. 
  3. ^ Winter, Claire Ruth (2010). Understanding Transgender Diversity: A Sensible Explanation of Sexual and Gender Identities. CreateSpace. ISBN 9781456314903. OCLC 703235508. 
  4. ^ Beemyn, Brett Genny (2008). "Genderqueer". glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Culture. Chicago: glbtq, Inc. Retrieved 3 May 2012. 
  5. ^ "Transgender (adj.)". Stylebook Supplement on LGBT Terminology. National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  6. ^ a b "Transgender Glossary of Terms". GLAAD Media Reference Guide. Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  7. ^ Walsh, Reuben (December 2010). "More T, vicar? My experiences as a genderqueer person of faith". All God's Children (Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement) 2 (3). 
  8. ^ http://www.who.int/gender/whatisgender/en/
  9. ^ Stryker, Susan (2008). Transgender History. Berkeley: Seal Press. ISBN 9781580052245. OCLC 183914566. 
  10. ^ Dahir, Mubarak (25 May 1999). "Whose Movement Is It?". The Advocate (Here Media): 52. 
  11. ^ Girshick, Lori B. (2008). Transgender Voices: Beyond Women and Men. Hanover: University Press of New England. ISBN 9781584656456. OCLC 183162406. 
  12. ^ Weber, Peter (February 21, 2014). "Confused by All the New Facebook Genders? Here's What They Mean.". Slate. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  13. ^ Feinberg, Leslie (1996). Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman. Boston: Beacon Press. ISBN 9780807079409. OCLC 33014093. 
  14. ^ Ruth Pearce (July 21, 2011). "Non-gendered titles see increased recognition". Lesbilicious. Retrieved 29 August 2012. 
  15. ^ a b "Madurai student pens book on gender variants". The Times of India. 2013-06-04. Retrieved 2013-06-16. 
  16. ^ Karthikeyan, D. (2012-07-30). "Cities / Madurai : Madurai comes out of the closet". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2012-10-10. 
  17. ^ A. Shrikumar (2013-10-18). "No more under siege". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  18. ^ a b "Genderqueer - The Minority among minorities". Tinpahar. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  19. ^ M. Gopi Shankar (2012-07-05). "Making themselves heard". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  20. ^ "Out of college as an author - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
  21. ^ "LGBTQ Needs Assessment" (PDF). Encompass Network. April 2013. pp. 52–53. Retrieved 18 October 2014. 
  22. ^ "Gender alphabet" (PDF). Safe Homes. p. 1. Retrieved 18 October 2014. 
  23. ^ A. Stiffler (23 April 2014). "Five Things You Should Know About Your Agender Acquaintance". Autostaddle.com. 
  24. ^ Johanna Schorn. "Taking the "Sex" out of Transsexual: Representations of Trans Identities in Popular Media" (PDF). Inter-Disciplinary.Net. Universität zu Köln. p. 1. Retrieved 23 October 2014. The term transgender is an umbrella term “and generally refers to any and all kinds of variation from gender norms and expectations” (Stryker 19). Most often, the term transgender is used for someone who feels that the sex assigned to them at birth does not reflect their own gender identity. They may identify as the gender ‘opposite’ to their assigned gender, or they may feel that their gender identity is fluid, or they may reject all gender categorizations and identify as agender or genderquee 
  25. ^ Marc E. Vargo (30 Nov 2011). "A Review of " Please select your gender: From the invention of hysteria to the democratizing of transgenderism "" (PDF). Journal of GLBT Family Studies (New York/London: Routledge) 7 (5): 2 (493). doi:10.1080/1550428X.2011.623982. ISSN 1550-4298. Retrieved 23 October 2014. up to three million U. S. citizens regard themselves as transgender, a term referring to those whose gender identities are at odds with their biological sex. The term is an expansive one, however, and may apply to other individuals as well, from the person whose behavior purposely and dramatically diverges from society’s traditional male/female roles to the “agender”, “bigender” or “third gender” person whose self-definition lies outside of the male/female binary altogether. In short, those counted under this term constitute a wide array of people who do not conform to, and may actively challenge, conventional gender norms. 
  26. ^ Kirstin Cronn-Mills (2014). "IV. Trans*spectrum. Identities". Transgender Lives: Complex Stories, Complex Voices. Twenty-First Century Books. p. 24. ISBN 978-1-4677-4796-7. Retrieved 23 October 2014. Many different individuals fall under what experts call the trans* spectrum, or the trans* umbrella.“I'm trans*” and “I'm transgender” are ways these individuals might refer to themselves. But there are distinctions among different trans* identities. [...] Androgynous individuals may not identify with either side of the gender binary. Other individuals consider themselves agender, and they may feel they have no gender at all. 
  27. ^ a b "What is Neutrois?". Retrieved February 21, 2014. 
  28. ^ http://genderfork.com/2009/neutrois/
  29. ^ https://www.wordnik.com/words/neutrois
  30. ^ Enke, Anne (2012). "Note on terms and and concepts". In Enke, Anne. Transfeminist Perspectives In and Beyond Transgender and Gender Studies. Temple University Press. pp. 16–20, see pp. 18–9. ISBN 9781439907481. 
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  34. ^ "About the Flag". Genderqueer Identities. April 2013. Retrieved 26 July 2014. 
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  36. ^ Albo, Mike (April 12, 2011). "The Official Justin Bond". Out. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  37. ^ Lee, Jiz (15 December 2010). "What Is Genderqueer?". Jiz Lee – Blog. jizlee.com. Retrieved 4 May 2012. 
  38. ^ Richard O'Brien: 'Society should not dictate gender' PinkNews.co.uk, 18 August 2009.
  39. ^ Young, Angie (1 July 2005). "An Interview with Chris Pureka". Off Our Backs (Arlington). 
  40. ^ Kellaway, Mitch (July 31, 2014). "Australian Model Ruby Rose Comes Out as Gender Fluid". The Advocate. Retrieved August 29, 2014. 
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  43. ^ Winter, Gopi Shankar (2014). Maraikkappatta Pakkangal: மறைக்கப்பட்ட பக்கங்கள். Srishti Madurai. ISBN 9781500380939. OCLC 703235508. 
  44. ^ "Clipping of The New Indian Express-Madurai, 25-12-2013 :readwhere". Epaper.newindianexpress.com. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  45. ^ "New LGBT Website Aims at Gender Awareness". The New Indian Express. 2013-12-25. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  46. ^ TNN Jul 10, 2013, 12.20AM IST (2013-07-10). "24-hour helpline launched for LGBTs in Madurai - Times Of India". Articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2014-02-15. 
  47. ^ "He said/she said?", SEE Magazine, 2003-05-08, retrieved 2007-09-22 
  48. ^ "Elisha Lim and Rae Spoon: Talking Shop". No More Potlucks, January 2012.
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  51. ^ Harrison, Jack; Grant, Jaime; Herman, Jody L. "A Gender Not Listed Here: Genderqueers, Gender Rebels, and OtherWise in the National Transgender Discrimination Survey" (PDF). 
  52. ^ a b "X marks the spot for intersex Alex", West Australian, via bodieslikeours.org. 11 January 2003
  53. ^ "Ingrid Holme, "Hearing People's Own Stories", in Science as Culture, Volume 17, Issue 3, 2008"
  54. ^ a b "Neither man nor woman", Sydney Morning Herald. 27 June 2010
  55. ^ Newsletter of the Sociology of Sexualities Section of the American Sociological Association, American Sociological Association Sexualities News, Volume 6, Issue 1, Summer 2003
  56. ^ a b Ten years of ‘X’ passports, and no protection from discrimination, Organisation Intersex International (OII) Australia, 19 January 2013
  57. ^ Sex Files: the legal recognition of sex in documents and government records. Concluding paper of the sex and gender diversity project (2009), Australian Human Rights Commission, March 2009.
  58. ^ "Getting a passport made easier for sex and gender diverse people". The Hon Kevin Rudd MP. 14 September 2011. Retrieved 23 December 2011. 
  59. ^ On Australian passports and “X” for sex, Organisation Intersex International (OII) Australia, 9 October 2011
  60. ^ "Sex and Gender Diverse Passport Applicants". Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Australian Government. Retrieved 23 December 2011. 
  61. ^ Australian Government Attorney General's Department, June 2013, "Australian Government Guidelines on the Recognition of Sex and Gender"
  62. ^ On the historic passing of the Sex Discrimination Amendment (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex Status) Act 2013, OII Australia, 25 June 2013
  63. ^ LGBTI groups welcome the passage of “historic” national discrimination laws, OII Australia, NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby, Transgender Victoria, A Gender Agenda, Victorian Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby, 26 June 2013
  64. ^ a b "No sex for me, please! Ex-transsexual Australian Norrie May-Welby is first legally genderless person", New York Daily News. 16 March 2010.
  65. ^ a b "Norrie May-Welby's battle to regain status as the world's first legally genderless person", Daily Life Australia. 8 November 2013
  66. ^ "I’m not a man... or a woman". Scottish Sun. 15 March 2010. Retrieved 15 March 2010. 
  67. ^ "Norrie May-Welby: The World's First Legally Genderless Person", The Huffington Post. 18 March 2010.

Further reading[edit]