We often sort things into binaries, systems with only two categories. The categories often take the form of “this” or “not this.” For example, fiction and nonfiction. Free and priced. These labels sometimes work when there are clear-cut differences between inanimate objects. However, people are rarely so simple.
The gender binary is the idea that all people are either entirely male or entirely female. No exceptions, nothing in between. We’ll point out how that idea is flawed and how gender identity is much more colorful than black and white.
When I’m sad, I watch videos and tv. Unfortunately, trans people aren’t always treated very well in popular media. We’re often depicted as the freaks, the punchline, and the ultimate strike-out when a guy tries to pick up a girl. We have enough shitty things happen to us in real life; we don’t need more of it. That’s why we need more media that makes us feel included, worthy, and empowered.
One of my favorite examples is Her Story, a YouTube mini-series. This show “looks inside the dating lives of trans & queer women as they navigate the intersections of desire & identity.” You can watch all six parts for free at herstoryshow.com or on YouTube.
Gender is a complex concept describing how a person sees and presents themselves. This includes many different components, all of which exist on a continuum. We will touch on five of these components and some of the more common expressions of each.