Third Gender ABC News

Gender Identity: “Third Gender”
Intersexed: Born with both male and female organs
or ambiguous organs - 0.1%-0.2% of live births.
• Once individuals are older and have developed a
gender identity they may have sex assignment
• However, some choose to remain “third sex” and
many countries have adopted X on documents
such as passports to acknowledge this.
Third Gender
• Can also refer to transgendered people
(having a gender identity that differs from
their biological sex) Biological men who feel
more like women and vice versa.
• Homosexual: being sexually attracted to
people of the same gender.
“Third Gender” in Various Cultures
• In Western cultures we have historically
determined gender through biology but other
cultures have a long history of recognizing
alternate-gender identities ie African, South
Asian, Polynesian North American Aborginal.
North American Aboriginal
• When western nations colonized North
America many aspects of Aboriginal societies,
such as recogniition of “two spirited” people
were lost.
• “Two-spirited” people did have status,
acceptance and a role in Aboriginal society.
• Canadian Native people have adopted “twospirited” to refer to “Third Sex” people in their
Siwan of North Africa
• Expected and encouraged homosexual
behaviour amongst unmarried sons until they
were in their late teens when they would be
expected to marry women.
Third Gender ABC News
60 minutes

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