Everyone knows (or does now) that gender is another socially constructed category. It is based on biological differences (which are real) such as differences in DNA, hormones, genitalia, sexual orientation, and overall appearance. Even the idea of what sex a person is is not always certain. A person could have the sex chromosomes yet not develop the genitalia associated with this sex because their receptors are insensitive to certain sex hormones. *Before somebody says this, I know that we could say this is sign of defectivity. I would like to point out that this view is a Western view. Many cultures see this as a normal way to be. And yes, we could use science (as Western culture does) to prove how defectivity is tied to normalcy. But there is a difference between using the scientific method to gain knowledge and using scientistic thinking to prove a truth that is socially constructed. For, the people who have the power to ask the questions frame the question and the study in such a way (which entails a bias) that they unavoidably come to the answer they seek. EG why are some people gay (which assumes this is unnatural)? What are the abnormalities associated with homosexuality? Such as how the male homosexual is emasculated. There is no question there as to what abnormalities and negatives come from heterosexuality. EG why are whites better than blacks? this question presupposes that whites are better and is in fact seeking to prove how whites can be proved to be better than blacks in order to prove why they are indeed better. This is a common use of science, to find proofs for what we want to believe, to highlight key points rather than simply trying to gain knowledge and truth. Every question is biased and is usually asked in hopes of reinforcing our own cultural perspectives/ways of knowoing. So keeping in mind our own cultural biases (and science is a part of our culture and both the scientific method and scientistic thinking do reveal things about our Western culture), please consider my question from what we actually know and not what we think we know. * That said, I do believe science is a great tool and does tell help us in understanding things...which in turn leads to ways in which we can use that knowledge to improve our lives. So, seeing intersexed individuals as equal states for the trait of sex, how can we begin to understand and delineate structures for this understanding? These people are sterile, but that assumes that sex must always be tied to reproduction (please don't respond that it is and leave it at that, explain why this is something I must take for granted). For some, sex is not tied to reproduction (leave out why they are wrong by using science, thanks again). We define sex in terms of gametes, the female having the larger gamete and the male the smaller. But what about those who have both? Are they are 3rd sex that blends both or are should they be considered an unrelated category of sex? Secondly, how should we assign gender? Should this always be tied to sex (as it is in Western culture)? It will be hard for some of us to separate this for my discussion, but consider that in other cultures the males are taught to be the passive, nurturing, emotional ones and the females are taught to be the aggressive ones. We could justify gender being related to sex because of hormones, but I think that humans are more than just their physiologies and that even there, there are degrees. I consider myself to be more masculine, as Western culture defines it. In astrology, there are male and female signs, and I have way more masculine signs (again, as Western culture defines it) it. So, is there any other more accurate system for assigning gender? Which qualities should be female, male, and which can be assigned to both? Should the majority of characteristics be either/or, or both? In this way, an intersexed individual would not have an ambiguous gender. And if we specified a third category they would not have an ambiguous sex either. For that matter, should sex be exact or a matter of degrees and why? Finally, where does sexuality fit in? There are those who are asexual and do not have a sex drive. I have talked to one girl who says she has more of an affinity for women, though she has no sexual interest in either sex. This seems like a good example of the seperation between gender and sex & sexuality and reproduction. This is being approached from an anthropological point of view, which sees science as a part of culture (tho it took a while to do so). We can link physical phenomenon with ways of understanding concepts such as sex and gender, but that is for another discussion.