Friday, October 3, 2008

Gender, Reproduction & Sex

Society mandates the control of intersexual bodies because they both blur and bridge the great divide . . . in the long view the prize might be a society in which sexuality is something to be celebrated for its subtleties ; and not something or someone to be feared or ridiculed.

"Gender : The other half of life "

"Reproduction : perpetuation of the species"

" Sex : reunion and renewal "


While gender is often viewed as an off switch of either male or female, there are variances that have been viewed from different perspectives across history and culture. Mostly, any variance from the norm has been classified as deviation, and at times those of 'intersex' (who do not fit neatly into a polarized gender perspective) have been surgically operated on in order to emphasize either male or female development.

Hermaphrodites, those people possessing both sets of sexual glands and organs, have been known throughout history (usually having prescriptive laws applied to them), although they are only one expression of a number of genetic variancies (or discrepancies) of gender.

We would more usefully be served by recognizing three extra expressions , not by choice though, of human gender: A CONTINUUM OF GENDER.

> Males
- genetically XY with testes and penis.

- genetically XX with ovaries, uterus and vagina.

>Herms (male pseudo-hermaphrodites)
- genetically XY who have testes and some female genitalia.

>Ferms (female pseudo-hermaphrodites)
- genetically XX who have ovaries and some male genitalia.

There is wide variance in each of these groups (as we know within conventional patternings of male and female) that is expressed or suppressed as secondary sexual characteristics and sexual behaviour and influence by sex hormones.

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