Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Intersex Definition:

An individual with neither male or female standard sexual anatomy, by birth or surgery.

Related Terms: Two-Spirited Person

Writing in the Cardozo Womens Law Journal in , Erin Lloyd wrote:

"Originally used as a term to refer to bisexuals in the late 19th century, the word intersex has since replaced the antiquated term hermaphrodite to refer to individuals born with chromosomal or genital variations that differ from what is considered standard male or female.

"As many as 65,000 children worldwide are born with an intersex condition each year, some estimating that between 150 and 300 are born in the United States alone."

The following description of the Intersex Society of North America {URL as of 2014-01-19 http://www.isna.org/} was refered to judicially and relied on by Justice Economus of the United States District Court in Johnson v Fresh Mark:

"Intersexuality is a set of medical conditions that feature congenital anomaly of the reproductive and sexual system. That is, a person with an intersex condition is born with sex chromosomes, external genitalia, or an internal reproductive system that is not considered for either male or female."

In January of 2014, that same organization, the Intersex Society of North America, published this definition of intersex:

Intersex is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male. For example, a person might be born appearing to be female on the outside, but having mostly male-typical anatomy on the inside. Or a person may be born with genitals that seem to be in-between the usual male and female types—for example, a girl may be born with a noticeably large clitoris, or lacking a vaginal opening, or a boy may be born with a notably small penis, or with a scrotum that is divided so that it has formed more like labia."

The 2008 report of the New Zealand Human Rights Commission To Be Who I Am, the Report of the Inquiry into Discrimination Experienced by Transgendered People, the following definition is proposed

"Intersex: a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that does not seem to fit the typical biological definitions of female or male."

REFERENCES

  • To Be Who I Am, Report of the Inquiry into Discrimination Experienced by Transgendered People, New Zealand Human Rights Commission, January 2008
  • ">Johnson v. Fresh Mark, Inc., 337 F. Supp. 2d 996 (2003)
  • Lloyd, Erin, Intersex Education, Advocacy & (and) the Law: The Struggle for Recognition and Protection, 11 Cardozo Women's L.J. 283 (2004-2005) at page 283.

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