Genderqueer is a term for individuals who feel that they have a queer or non-normative experience with gender, either through their gender identity, their gender presentation, or other experiences of gender. It is often used interchangeably with non-binary to mean a gender that is not strictly male or female. This definition can be used as a gender identity on its own or as an umbrella term.
Genderqueer has been used as an adjective to refer to any individuals who do not fit the mainstream ideals of gender or gender presentation, regardless of their self-defined gender identity. It includes anyone who "queers" their gender, either through their identity or their gender expression. Using this definition genderqueer can be used to describe binary individuals (both cisgender and transgender) who have a non-normative experience with gender or gender presentation. One may also identify as genderqueer as a political statement. Terms like gender non-conforming may be used to describe some of these individuals as well.
Some genderqueer individuals may also identify as another gender identity (such as androgyne, bigender etc.) or they may identify solely as genderqueer. They may also identify as transgender and/or non-binary. Some genderqueer individuals may wish to transition, either medically, socially, or both. Genderqueer individuals can have any sexual orientation.
Genderqueer has also been used as a gender modality for one who queers or subverts gender and expectations related to gender, irrespective of assigned gender. Sometimes it may also apply as an orientationgender.
Genderqueer was first used in the 1990s as "gender queer", used by anyone who experienced or expressed gender with the non-normative connotations of the Queer Movement. The earliest known use of "genderqueer" as a single word and identity is by Riki Anne Wilchins in the Spring 1995 newsletter of Transexual Menace. Wilchins stated they identify as genderqueer in their 1997 autobiography.
By 1999 and 2000, online communities were using the term genderqueer as an umbrella to unite a number of non-binary identities and identifications. Over the next decade, genderqueer developed as a standalone identity with particular connotations.
Flag and Symbols
The genderqueer flag was designed by Marilyn Roxie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The first design for the flag was posted in June 2010; the flag was later changed in September 2010.
The flag was changed again in June 2011, producing the final flag. The colors represent the following: lavender, the mixing of blue and pink, traditional male and female colors, is meant to represent genderqueer indivduals who are both male and female or are in between male and female, such as androgyne. It also represents queerness, as lavender has historically been associated with homosexuality and bisexuality. White represents individuals falling completely outside of the gender binary such as agender/genderless indivduals. Dark chartreuse green, the inverse of lavender, is meant to represent those who are outside the binary, such as neutrois.
The most common genderqueer/non-binary symbol was created by Johnathan R in 2012. It is similar to the male or female symbols, but instead of a cross on the female symbol or arrow on the male symbol, it uses an X or a star on the end. The use of the X denounces both binary genders, and the letter X is commonly used in non-binary pronouns and titles. The position, pointing straight up, also deviates from the positions of the male and female symbols.
An alternate genderqueer flag was designed by Reddit user u/ultra_cricket_boy on February 20, 2020.
An alternative symbol was created by wiki user WiiFyneLM consisting of a lambda with a line through it and an arrow at the tip. This is because the lambda is a commonly used queer symbol and the line and arrow resemble the venus (female) and mars (male) symbols. This symbol was created to provide a more distinct differentiator from nonbinary.
- Andrew Pegoda (15 July 2020). Not cis. Not trans. Genderqueer.
- queeranarchism (16 February 2014). "Yeah, but can you explain the cis gender thing?". Tumblr. Retrieved 28 January 2021