Contesting Intersex: The Dubious Diagnosis (Biopolitics)

Contesting Intersex: The Dubious Diagnosis (Biopolitics)

Contesting Intersex: The Dubious Diagnosis (Biopolitics)

Watch Georgiann Davis in National Geographic's Gender Revolution documentary with Katie Couric
 
A personal, compelling perspective on how medical diagnoses can profoundly hurt, or help, the lived experiences of entire communities
 
Winner, 2016 Donald Light Award for the Applied or Public Practice of Medical Sociology, presented by the American Sociological Association

When sociologist Georgiann Davis was a teenager, her doctors discovered that she possessed XY chromosomes, marking her as intersex. Rather than share this information with her, they withheld the diagnosis in order to “protect” the development of her gender identity; it was years before Davis would see her own medical records as an adult and learn the truth. Davis’ experience is not unusual. Many intersex people feel isolated from one another and violated by medical practices that support conventional notions of the male/female sex binary which have historically led to secrecy and shame about being intersex. Yet, the rise of intersex activism and visibility in the US has called into question the practice of classifying intersex as an abnormality, rather than as a mere biological variation. This shift in thinking has the potential to transform entrenched...

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