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Promoting human rights and equality for all intersex people through arts, education and action.

Creating a third gender creates a whole new set of problems and oppressions

A number of erstwhile allies of intersex people have supposed – apparently without bothering to actually ask – that intersex people want the legislative creation of a third gender or a third sex.

Sex – male and female under the sex binary belief system, and gender – man and woman under the gender binary belief system, are two very different though related things.

The reality is that intersex people do not want a third sex or gender category and the reality is that third genders or sexes lead to a whole new set of problems and oppressions of difference. Note the comment by OII’s Gina Wilson under the article.

World Policy Blog: Dividing by Three: Nepal Recognizes a Third Gender - click to read this article.

World Policy Blog: Dividing by Three: Nepal Recognizes a Third Gender - click to read this article.

Observers of Nepal’s LGBTI rights movement sometimes claim the category was created in line with contemporary Nepali politics. Listing the third gender as a comprehensive LGBTI category, they claim, means the movement can swell its numbers and gain clout—and eventually form a political party. Nepali language media have referred intermittently to Pant as a third gender, despite his open identity as a gay man. Others place the identity category into gender-ambiguous cultural tropes such as hijras (who often categorize themselves as a third gender in other South Asian countries). With 102 ethnic groups officially registered in the country and less than half of its citizens identifying Nepali as their mother tongue, dozens of words linked with sexual and gender identities are associated with the third gender category.