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Terminology Surrounding Gender Identity and Expression





Outright Team

Gender is a composite of socially constructed roles, behaviors, activities and/or attributes that a given society may consider appropriate for people of an assigned sex. Gender identity, like gender, refers to an individual’s personal sense of being female, male, both, or anywhere along the gender spectrum. Gender identity may or may not correspond to the sex assumed or assigned at birth. Meanwhile, gender expression refers to how a person presents their gender. This can include their clothing, mannerisms, pronouns, and names.

The following is a list of collectively used gender identities and expressions:

Agender: A person who identifies with this term will often consider themselves as not subscribing to any gender identity.

Cisgender: This term is commonly used to refer to people who identify exclusively with the gender assigned at birth.

Demigender: This is a term used to describe a person who feels a connection and/or has an internal leaning toward a particular gender.

Gender Fluid: This describes a person who moves fluidly between genders or whose gender shifts over time.

Gender Neutral: Someone who expresses themselves in such a way that they do not wish to be perceived as any one gender

Gender Nonconforming: Gender nonconforming is most commonly used to describe a gender expression different from cultural stereotypes associated with that person’s perceived gender or gender assigned at birth.

Genderqueer: Genderqueer describes a gender identity that is not defined as exclusively male or female. Genderqueer people experience their gender in unique ways. Their identity can include elements of the feminine, masculine, and nonbinary, or none of these. Identifying as genderqueer may be viewed as a rejection of associations or labels.

Gender Questioning: Gender questioning describes someone who is questioning all or parts of their gender identity or expression and does not wish to identify themselves with a specific gender identity.

Intergender: Intergender describes a gender identity that is a mix of both masculine and feminine identities.

Multi-Gender: Multi-gender describes people who hold more than one gender identity.

Nonbinary: This is a widely used term to describe a gender identity that cannot be categorized as masculine or feminine. Nonbinary people experience their gender in different ways. This identity may be experienced as a combination of male and female, neither male nor female, nor something completely independent of notions of conventional gender identities.

Pangender: Pangender is a gender identity where a person identifies as all or many gender identities.

Pronouns: Pronouns are easily becoming one of the most recognized ways people identify their gender and how they want to be referred to. Pronouns are essential to respect, but they do not necessarily tell you about a person’s gender identity. A person who uses she/her pronouns can still be nonbinary; a person who uses he/they pronouns could identify in several ways.

Transgender/Trans: Transgender is used to describe any person who has a gender identity that is different from the gender they were assigned at birth.

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