The disappearance of Japan's "Third Gender" | Curio

The disappearance of Japan's "Third Gender"

12 mins | Jan 18, 2022

How understandings of gender and sex can be erased quickly. In the Edo era of Japan from 1603 to 1867, young men went beyond the dichotomy of male and female to include what is often referred to as a “third gender” or Wakashu. Christin Bohnke explores this fascinating rite of passage for young men back then and examines why, by the second half of the nineteenth century, it had all but disappeared.

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