National Geographic Magazine

The ‘January 2017’ Special issue of National Geographic magazine dedicated to covering ‘the gender revolution‘ is scheduled to arrive in stores on December 27, 2016. Although an exciting development, there are already some concerns being expressed. This is not a review, as I do not have access to a preview copy.

Not included in the Facebook discussion, as far as I can see, is that the issue is tied to an upcoming documentary of the same title which will air on NatGeo TV in January which was announced (see Katie Couric to Investigate the “Gender Revolution” in New Documentary) this summer.

Writing on their Facebook page, intersex artist and activist Pidgeon Pagonis notes that “ the editors got the definition of intersex wrong. They unfortunately used a stigmatizing medicalized definition of intersex that leads to more pain and suffering for intersex people.” They were interviewed for the piece, and are included in a group photograph in the issue. Pidgeon goes on to ask their followers to “let National Geographic know that intersex people do not have ‘disorders of sex development’, but instead are people with sex traits that don’t fall neatly into binary definitions of either male or female.

As I posted on Facebook when I first saw the magazine cover, “(i)n light of the new owners, I will wait to read the content before saying anything more than ‘looks hopeful’…“. We can but hope that their regressive description of Intersex noted above is not reflective of the over-all tone of the issue.

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