Friday, October 14, 2011
What is it that you feel makes you a woman?
Is it your biology? The way you present yourself to the world? The way the world sees you? The way you dress and adorn yourself?
Is it your life-experience? The way you interact with others? The way you think and act?
Is it your secondary sexual characteristics? Is it related to the ability to bear children? Are people who've given birth more womanly than those who haven't? Are infertile women less female?
Does your gender reside in your body, your mind, your reproductive ability, or your social presentation? Do you have a gut-feeling or intuition that you are female? Does gender lie in such self-knowledge?
Some female Olympic athletes learn, after testing, that they possess a chromozonal mutation that didn't announce itself in any previous way: their bodies are conventionally female with normal genitalia; their childhoods and upbringing were normal for girls; and their lives are typically female. Yet scientists says these women are not biologically female in the strict sense. What are they? (Further discussion of this here.)
You've probably guessed this is not an academic subject to me -- I've been having a conversation about gender my entire life. What makes us male, female, or something else? What am I?
If you have any thoughts, please share. Thanks.
(Drawing by Megan.)