TRANSGENDER IN SOCIETY : Challenges and Solutions

TRANSGENDER IN SOCIETY : Challenges and Solutions





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The history of the hijras or eunuchs or transgenders or transsexuals or simply put the LGBT history (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender) dates back to antiquity. Recorded instances of same sex love and sexuality can be found in many ancient civilizations. Transgender and third sex people have been recorded in almost all cultures across human history. Asian countries have centuries old histories of the existence of gender- variant people—in present times who have been labeled as “transgender people”. India is no exception from the transgender history. The Vedas (1500 BC–500 BC) describe individuals as belonging to one of the three separate categories, according to one’s nature or prakriti. These are mentioned in Vatsayan’s Kama sutra as ‘Pums-prakriti’ (male nature), ‘Stree-prakriti’ (female nature) and ‘Tritiya-prakriti’ (third nature) who are dressed either in men’s or women’s clothes and perform fellatio on men.In India, people with a wide range of transgender related identities including Hijras, Aravanis, Kothis, Jogtas/Jogappas, Shiv Sakthis, etc., exist. Often these people have been the part of the broader culture and treated with great respect, at least in the past, although some are still accorded particular respect even in the present. The term ‘transgender people’ is generally used to describe those who transgress social gender norms. Transgender is often used as an umbrella term to signify individuals who defy rigid, binary gender constructions and who express or present a breaking and /or blurring of culturally prevalent stereotypical gender roles. Transgender people may live full or part-time in the opposite to their biological sex.In contemporary usage “transgender” has become an umbrella term that is used to describe a wide range of identities and experiences, including but not limited to pre-operative, post-operative and non-operative transsexual people (who strongly identify with the gender opposite to their biological sex); male and female cross-dressers, transvestites, drag queens or drag kings and men and women regardless of sexual orientation, whose appearance or characteristics are perceived to be gender atypical. A male-to-female transgender person is referred to as “transgender woman” and a female-to-male transgender person as “transgender man”.


1. Introduction, 2. Transgender Through the Ages, 3. Transgender - Truth and Pain, 4. Life Style and Problems of Transgender, 5. Social and Economic Conditions of Transgender, 6. Developmental Action Points, 7. Bibliography. 



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