This week’s Terminology Tuesday is going to be a big one. I’m going to explain the gender spectrum.
The gender spectrum contains any and all gender identities, but is most often used to refer to nonbinary gender identities (the binary gender identities are male and female).
The gender spectrum can be broken up into three distinct sections: biological sex, gender identity, and gender expression.
Biological sex is the physical makeup of one’s body. Some examples are male, female, and intersex, but this is by no means an exhaustive list.
Gender identity is how one views oneself. Some examples are man, woman, and genderqueer, but this is by no means an exhaustive list.
Gender expression is how one communicates their gender to others. Some examples are masculine, feminine, and androgynous, but this is by no means an exhaustive list.
These sections are independent of one another but can all align, such as when a biological female views herself as a woman and expresses herself femininely. However, when they do not align, such as when a biological female views himself as a man and expresses himself masculinely, it can create a situation where the individual will identify with an identity on the gender spectrum.