Essay 1: Two-gender systems
Written by: Hi Yang (Diana) Kim
TA: Melanie Redford
Prof: June Larkin
As Grewal &Kaplan (2005) writes, the “two gender system” that at first seemed so “natural” has not been so for all time or everywhere in the world (P.2).” The two-gender system, also known as the “gender binary”, which classifies sex and gender into two distinct forms of masculine and feminine, sets limitations for individuals who may or may not wish to fit into specific categories of two gender roles. Setting out this boundary denies one the ability to express their sexuality freely: this may result in the discrimination and subordination of alternative forms of gender that society does not deem as “natural”. In other words, individuals who do not classify themselves as belonging to the main types of gender systems may be socially neglected and their sexuality, frowned upon. This essay will illustrate what society deems as “natural” and how the concept of gender and sexual diversity vary across cultures and historical periods. In addition, this paper will argue that the two-sex systems embedded in our society are not adequate to encompass the full spectrum of human sexuality. The “two-gender system” is defined as the classification of sex and gender into two biological categories of masculine and feminine: a social boundary used to prevent people from crossing or mixing gender roles, where the society divides people into male and female gender roles (Larkin, June. From lecture oct.3, 2012). This binary system forces an individual to fit into one of the two categories of male or female. This bipolar categorizing of sexuality however does not and cannot encompass the full range of human sexuality. According to statistical analysis, it is said that out of 1,000 children born, seventeen children are intersexual (Fausto-Sterling, 2010, p.14). The 1.7 percent, though it is an estimate, is not a small number: theses intersexual...
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