Gender Identity

Topics: Gender, Masculinity, Femininity Pages: 3 (747 words) Published: February 1, 2013
Gender Identity
Ebonie Washington
Lisa Tobler

Gender Identity

Gender Identity is something that everyone experiences. Just like any other major contributor to life, there are many factors that help in the determination of gender identity. Some believe that gender identity is determined by either nature, nurture or a little bit of both. A person’s gender can be determined by the hormones produced during gestation. The combination of hormones determines if the sex of a fetus will be a boy or a girl.

In some cases, “Some individuals are born with both ovarian and testicular tissues” (Spencer A. Rathus, 2011) When this occurs, a person is considered to be a hermaphrodite. Although an individual in such situation has parts of bot h sex, they usually consider themselves to be the sex that is assigned at birth. When a child is born a hermaphrodite, the gender at birth is determined by the combination of X and Y chromosomes. The X,X chromosomes combination produces female organs on the inside and external sexual organs that mimic those of a male. “The clitoris is enlarged and may resemble a small penis.” (Spencer A. Rathus, 2011)

An individual who was born this way may have a hard time identifying with their gender identity. A hermaphrodite can be classified as a female based on the chromosome combination, but have a hard time identifying with the female gender because of the external sexual organs.

According to the masculinity and femininity continuum, some individuals are considered to be more masculine and feminine than others. For example, a female who goes against a male for his position in the workplace would be considered more masculine. According to the text “A person who is highly masculine, whether male or female, may also possess feminine traits- and vice versa.” (Spencer A. Rathus. 2011)

In my life, the number one factor that contributed to my gender identity is the way my family has treated me. As a child my mother...

References: Rathus, S. A., Nevid, J.S., and Fichner-Rathus, L. (2005). Human sexuality in a world of diversity. (6th ed.) Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
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