Intersex and Intrasex Debates: Building Alliances to Challenge Sex Discrimination
Cardozo Journal of Law & Gender, Vol. 13, No. 101, 2006
19 Pages Posted: 12 Apr 2006 Last revised: 24 Mar 2009
Intersex activist organizations are relative newcomers to the social justice movement. In the short time since their formation, they have effectively educated society and the legal and medical communities about their concerns. Until recently, the fight for intersex rights has been limited to disputes between physicians and intersex rights activists about the appropriateness of the dominant treatment protocol. Now, potentially divisive debates are erupting within the movement and between some intersex activist groups and other groups seeking an end to sex and gender discrimination, namely feminists and LGBT organizations. This paper explores the nature of these tensions and compares them to disputes that have plagued other social justice movements. It proposes that groups seeking an end to discrimination based upon gender nonconformity form coalitions around this unifying goal to help these organizations avoid the divisiveness that has hampered the progress of other social justice movements.
Keywords: Intersex, gay, lesbian, transssex, civil rights, social justice movements, identity groups, gender nonconformity, discrimination, sex discrimination, female genital cutting, feminist movement
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