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Book part
Publication date: 3 August 2011

Georgiann Davis

Purpose – Intersexuality is examined from a sociology of diagnosis frame to show how the diagnostic process is connected to other social constructions, offer new support…

Abstract

Purpose – Intersexuality is examined from a sociology of diagnosis frame to show how the diagnostic process is connected to other social constructions, offer new support that medical professionals define illness in ways that sometimes carries negative consequences, and illustrate how the medical profession holds on to authority in the face of patient activism.

Methodology/approach – Data collection occurred over a two-year period (October 2008 to August 2010). Sixty-two in-depth interviews were conducted with individuals connected to the intersex community including adults with intersexuality, parents, medical professionals, and intersex activists.

Findings – Medical professionals rely on essentialist understandings of gender to justify the medicalization of intersexuality, which they currently are doing through a nomenclature shift away from intersex terminology in favor of disorders of sex development (DSD) language. This shift allows medical professionals to reassert their authority and reclaim jurisdiction over intersexuality in light of intersex activism that was successfully framing intersexuality as a social rather than biological problem.

Practical implications – This chapter encourages critical thought and action from activists and medical professionals about shifts in intersex medical management.

Social implications – Intersexuality might be experienced in less stigmatizing ways by those personally impacted.

Originality/value – The value of this research is that it connects the sociology of diagnosis literature with gender scholarship. Additional value comes from the data, which were collected after the 2006 nomenclature shift.

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Article
Publication date: 14 March 2016

Sylvan Fraser

The purpose of this paper is to explore the harms suffered by intersex children who are subjected to medically unnecessary genital-normalizing surgery (GNS) and the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the harms suffered by intersex children who are subjected to medically unnecessary genital-normalizing surgery (GNS) and the possible applicability of statutes prohibiting female genital mutilation (FGM) to certain cases of GNS to redress this harm in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

Consulting publications by medical researchers and intersex activists alike, this comment reviews the procedures undertaken as part of GNS (most commonly including clitoral reduction) and the reasons behind these procedures. It also parses the language of federal and state statutes prohibiting FGM in the USA.

Findings

Surgical practices that include clitoral cutting when the procedure is not necessary to the health of the person on whom it is performed constitute FGM and are punishable under federal and certain state laws in the USA. GNS with clitoral reduction fits the definition of FGM because it is performed for cosmetic and social reasons, not medical necessity.

Originality/value

Acknowledging GNS with clitoral reduction as FGM is a crucial strategy to ensure that female-assigned intersex children’s rights to bodily autonomy are protected to the same extent as non-intersex children’s rights. Intersex legal activists in the USA should press for enforcement of FGM statutes as to female-assigned intersex children until the medical practitioners who continue to defend and perform GNS see the procedures as illegal genital mutilation.

Details

International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4902

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Book part
Publication date: 23 November 2017

Georgiann Davis and Chris Wakefield

Historically, it has been common practice for doctors and parents to withhold the diagnosis from their minor intersex patients. This study seeks to integrate intersex

Abstract

Purpose

Historically, it has been common practice for doctors and parents to withhold the diagnosis from their minor intersex patients. This study seeks to integrate intersex youth experiences into the growing body of literature on diagnosis disclosure for intersex patients.

Methodology/approach

Using gender structure theory as a model, 16 intersex youth were given in-depth surveys regarding their experiences with their intersex identity in individual, interactional, and institutional contexts.

Findings

Participants more positively experience intersex than the earlier generations of intersex people. They were not deeply troubled by their diagnosis as doctors have historically feared, and they are open about their diagnosis with their non-intersex peers and teachers. They also find peer support valuable.

Research limitations/implications

Data was collected from a single event and cannot represent all intersex youth. Future research must continue to engage with intersex youth experiences both inside of and beyond activist and support group networks.

Practical implications

These findings are strong exploratory evidence for the importance of diagnosis disclosure for intersex youth. Policies of withholding intersex diagnoses in clinical and familial contexts should be reevaluated in light of the experiences of intersex youth.

Social implications

Diagnosis disclosure for intersex youth creates the potential for increased medical decision-making participation and increased capacity for activism and community building around intersex issues.

Originality/value

Our results encourage future studies that center the experiences of intersex youth, for we conclude that theorizing the lived experiences of intersex people is incomplete without their perspectives.

Details

Gender, Sex, and Sexuality Among Contemporary Youth
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-613-6

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Book part
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Dylan Amy Davis

Purpose: To consider the extent to which the legal recognition of non-binary gender has the potential to disrupt the gender binary.Methodology/Approach: This chapter will…

Abstract

Purpose: To consider the extent to which the legal recognition of non-binary gender has the potential to disrupt the gender binary.

Methodology/Approach: This chapter will employ case study as method, focusing on recent changes to Australian law and policy, which introduce a third gender category. I rely on the work of queer theorists on normativity and recognition as a theoretical framework and on the work of social scientists on transgender people as evidence.

Findings: This chapter finds that while there is much to be celebrated about increasing alternatives to the dominant categories of male and female, the legal recognition of non-binary gender may in fact serve to conceptually purge the dominant gender categories of non-conforming elements while simultaneously masking the ways in which institutions of regulatory power continue to demand conformity with normative standards of gender.

Research Limitations: Since few non-binary individuals in Australia have adopted the X marker the implications laid out in this paper are speculative. The experiences of non-binary individuals present an important avenue for further research.

Practical Implications: I recommend, as an alternative to further gender classifications, that we should seek to minimize the degree to which membership of a particular gender category is used to distribute rights and privileges.

Originality/Value of Paper: This chapter advances the literature on non-binary gender, contributes to existing queer and feminist analyses of the gender binary and extends work on normativity to legal recognition of alternative genders.

Details

Gender Panic, Gender Policy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-203-1

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Book part
Publication date: 26 February 2016

Peggy McEachreon

To explore the relationship between LGBTQIA+1

1
LGBTQIA+  =  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual/Ally, and others not defined within these…

Abstract

Purpose

To explore the relationship between LGBTQIA+ 1

1

LGBTQIA+  =  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual/Ally, and others not defined within these terms.

human rights and libraries.

LGBTQIA+  =  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual/Ally, and others not defined within these terms.

Methodology/approach

Framed around the Williams Institute report Public Attitudes toward Homosexuality and Gay Rights across Time and Countries (2014), and incorporating aspects of queer theory, this chapter will explore some of the literature discussing libraries and the LGBTQIA+  community. It will then detail some specific examples of activities libraries are engaging in to support LGBTQIA+  rights.

Findings

Many libraries around the globe appear to be offering special programs and services for LGBTQIA+  persons.

Research limitations/implications

This is not a systematic review of library services to the LGBTQIA+  community. The author relied on freely available information sources.

Originality/value

Highlights some of the excellent work libraries are doing in support of LGBTQIA+  human rights. The role of libraries are constantly changing, this chapter points to the potential for libraries to take a stronger role to enact social justice and support human rights.

Details

Perspectives on Libraries as Institutions of Human Rights and Social Justice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-057-2

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Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2005

Iain Morland

My discussion of intersexuality's changing exemplificatory position within feminist studies of science explains how its medical management has emerged as an exemplary…

Abstract

My discussion of intersexuality's changing exemplificatory position within feminist studies of science explains how its medical management has emerged as an exemplary injustice of recognition. Specifically, the surgical protocol that aims to make unusual genitalia invisible, and the medical obfuscation of intersexuality's ramifications for the cultural construction of gender, have been written as a wrong by Anne Fausto-Sterling and Suzanne Kessler. By mapping intersex treatment as a discursively produced injustice, I argue that it is accordingly within discourse that the wrongs of intersex treatment may be redressed – not by undoing past surgeries, or by punishing clinicians as personally “guilty.”

Details

Toward a Critique of Guilt: Perspectives from Law and the Humanities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-189-7

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Book part
Publication date: 5 August 2019

Dawne Moon and Theresa W. Tobin

Scholars who study humility tend to think of it in highly individualized terms, such as an absence of vanity or an accurate self-assessment. Individuating definitions can…

Abstract

Scholars who study humility tend to think of it in highly individualized terms, such as an absence of vanity or an accurate self-assessment. Individuating definitions can lead to such jarring concepts as the “humble white supremacist” (Roberts & Wood, 2007). Qualitative sociological research in the (predominantly North American) evangelical movement to accept and affirm lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, and intersex (LGBTQI) identities, same-sex marriage, and sex/gender transition reveals that humility is not simply the awareness that “I could be wrong.” That awareness is rooted in what we have found to be humility’s defining element, concern to foster relationship. These findings prompt us to define humility as a fundamentally social disposition, as concern to protect the kinds of intimate connection with others that can transform the self. Recognizing the social nature of humility reveals why humility is incompatible with injustice.

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Religion, Humility, and Democracy in a Divided America
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-949-7

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Book part
Publication date: 28 November 2017

Glenda Tibe Bonifacio

This chapter provides the introduction of the book and argues why gender and feminism matter in theory and praxis in the 21st century. It includes the conceptual…

Abstract

This chapter provides the introduction of the book and argues why gender and feminism matter in theory and praxis in the 21st century. It includes the conceptual interrogation of the meaning of gender and feminism and its practice in western and non-western contexts; global currents in feminist struggles; thematic organization of the book; and the future under ‘feminist eyes’. The thread of shared struggles among diverse groups of women based on selected themes — movements, spaces and rights; inclusion, equity and policies; reproductive labour, work and economy; health, culture and violence; and sports and bodies — situates Canada as a western society with avowed egalitarian ideals favouring gender equality and social justice, but with its own issues and concerns like women in other countries facing their own challenges.

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Global Currents in Gender and Feminisms
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-484-2

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Book part
Publication date: 15 October 2013

Susan C. Pearce

This chapter interrogates the practice of gender-based asylum as a window to the problem of gender-based violence (GBV) as a driver of migration, with a focus on Southeast…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter interrogates the practice of gender-based asylum as a window to the problem of gender-based violence (GBV) as a driver of migration, with a focus on Southeast Europe, reporting on one instance of the intersection between the more private matter of gender and the realms of “high politics.”

Design/methodology/approach

The research is based on qualitative methods, primarily drawn from existing (written) sources, including legal cases, government and NGO reports, and other documents, supplemented by information gathered through in-depth interviews.

Findings

This research found that the region is a source of migrants escaping GBV, and that migrants from this region have been agents in moving the practice of gender-based asylum forward in recent years. That migration is increasingly multidirectional. Further, the “West” offers gender-based asylum inconsistently.

Research limitations/implications

Political and policy change on these matters across this region were transitioning rapidly when this chapter was written; there will be a need, therefore, for updates based on any new developments.

Social implications

Policy progress should be based on recognition of Southeast Europe’s varied roles as receiving, transit, and destination countries as the region’s viability and visibility increase.

Originality/value

The chapter analyzes a legal terrain that is rarely done outside of the field of law. It offers the most recent analysis of current developments in gender-based asylum with a Southeast Europe focus. Finally, it contributes empirical research to the evolving theoretical discussions of the privatization of the public sphere, particularly for emerging democracies.

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Gendered Perspectives on Conflict and Violence: Part A
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-110-6

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Book part
Publication date: 17 September 2018

Patrick Blessinger, Jaimie Hoffman and Mandla Makhanya

The chapters in this book focus on how higher education can cultivate and promote a more inclusive and equitable environment in higher education, especially with regard to…

Abstract

The chapters in this book focus on how higher education can cultivate and promote a more inclusive and equitable environment in higher education, especially with regard to gender diversity as well as those non-conforming, non-heteronormative groups. The chapters in this volume cover the broad picture/context of diversity in various countries as well as a specific focus on gender. The chapters discuss the factors relating to inclusion and equity, what is driving campuses to be more inclusive, and practical steps and case studies that higher education institutions can implement to create more inclusive and equitable learning environments. Finally, this volume discusses the need for inclusive leadership which involves building institutional capacity for inclusion and creating the right conditions under which inclusion and equity can grow and thrive and crafting policies and practices whose end result is to create a culture of inclusion.

Details

Contexts for Diversity and Gender Identities in Higher Education: International Perspectives on Equity and Inclusion
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-056-7

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