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(Original: Gender Wiki)

Gender refers to an individuals's experience of their identity relative to the concepts of masculinity, femininity, androgyny, xeninity, or another factor. Everyone's gender is a complex and unique experience, and it can be difficult to explain this gender to others.

Some parts of the experience of gender include:

  • Gender Identity: How a person thinks of their own gender within themselves. In nearly all circumstances, this is what is meant when discussing 'gender'. Gender identity is a personal experience and cannot be dictated by others.
  • Gender Presentation: The way one chooses to present themselves to others in order to communicate their gender. Some people are gender non-conforming, meaning they present themselves in a way that does not align with the roles associated with their gender.
  • Sex: The way one's physical body reflects characteristics associated with gender. Sex and gender identity are often conflated, but are separate in that sex is physical whereas gender is psychological. Most individuals have a gender that 'matches' their assigned sex, which is called cisgender. Others have a gender different from their assigned sex, which is called transgender.
  • Assigned Gender At Birth: The sex an individual is assigned at birth based on their genitalia. They are usually then raised as the cisgender role associated with that sex. Someone's AGAB can not always accurately predict their gender, as some people turn out to be transgender later in life. In addition an AGAB can also not always accurately predict biological sex, as some people assigned dyadic (male or female) at birth turn out to be intersex.
  • Gender Dysphoria: Experiencing discomfort with or a disconnect with one's AGAB. This can include wanting to go by a different name or pronouns, desiring different sex characteristics, wanting to be perceived as a different gender, being uncomfortable with the roles surrounding one's AGAB, or identifying as a gender other than what one was assigned at birth.
  • Relationship to gender roles: The way an individual views the roles that society expects them to play based on their gender.

Gender is not related to orientation, except in that societal gender roles often include the expectation of attraction to a particular gender.

Societies also tend to be largely influenced by a gender binary, which assumes that all people can be categorized via their characteristics as either male/men or female/women. However, there are many people who have a gender outside of that strict binary, which is called nonbinary or abinary. Some people do not have genders at all (agender), others only have partial genders (demigender), and still others have multiple genders (multigender) which can mean that someone could be both binary genders.

Not all societies have a gender binary- some have a gender trinary or other varying numbers of traditional gender categories. This is more common in non-Western cultures. There are many culturally exclusive genders, such as two spirit.

Because gender is a personal experience which cannot be shared directly, many find it challenging to imagine that others experience gender differently to the way they do, which often leads to gender-based discrimination. Gender-based prejudice is also quite prevalent, with gender minorities often facing harsher treatment and social conditions than others.


  • Phonetic: JEN-dr
  • IPA: ʤɛndər