A world without gender norms: A Heteronormative Perspective


Nowadays we see that gender is undertaking a revolution. as new and new unconventional forms of gender gain acceptance, and move beyond the gender binary. These controversies state to the age old question: How fundamental are sex categories? Do humans naturally fit into the gender binary? Male or Female which are distinct as their anatomy as well as their brains and behavior?

Professor Judith Butler in her 1990 book ‘Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity talks about the opaque jargon of misogyny in feminism. Professor Butler also raises questions that suggest a meaning that she does not explain explicitly.

Her main purpose is the subversion of identity which forces readers to think and question the dichotomies of male and female. The idea that is the fundamental goal of feminism is subversion.

Almost a percent of the population are born with intersex genitalia, being forced to conform into the gender binary and face severe ostracism.

What is heteronormativity? Why does it pose as a problem?

According to the Merriam Webster it defines as an idea “based on the attitude that heteronormativity is only normal and the natural expression of sexuality. It also says that you are attracted to people of the opposite sex.

It assumes ‘Gender Binary’ roles are the only normal way

A lot of patriarchal gender roles stand as a foundation of heteronormativity. Society views men and women as inherently different beings based on genitalia. As a result, we must behave ourselves based on these preconceived differences.

According to the magazine Boundless, masculine roles are associated with strength, aggression and dominance while feminity is associated with passivity and subordination.

How did this begin?

This all starts off evolved from the instant we’re born. Doctors wrap us in a blue or crimson blanket to affirm whether or not us healthy into the arena as a woman or a boy. From there, boys should play with vans and weapons at the same time as ladies escape the dolls and Easy-Bake Ovens. From childhood, we set requirements that qualify guys as robust companies and ladies as prone nurturers. Women who aren’t inherently nurturing and guys who display their feelings don’t healthy into those boxes. As a result, society rejects and ostracizes the folks that don’t be given inflexible social norms.

Traditional gender roles operate under the idea that men and women are different. However, we may not be so different after all. In a scientific study, the behavioral neuroscientist Daphna Joel found that “there is no one type of male brain or female brain.” The study showed that only .01 percent of the subjects have stereotypically male or female attributes in their brain.

Heteronormativity, however, pushes these false notions of differences between the two sexes. Thus, it is our choice to accept or reject patriarchal gender norms.

It Assumes That There Are Only Two Genders.

Under heteronormativity, female and male are the only acceptable gender identities. Anything else outside of that is considered “non-binary.”

As Dr. Meredith R. Chapman explained to Teen Vogue, “Non-binary gender is any gender that isn’t exclusively male or female. Non-binary people may feel some mix of both male and female, somewhere in between or something completely different.”

Often, the outside world misunderstands individuals who do not follow this system. However, many reject the binary despite the challenges it entails.



I am Akshinta Das a poet,singer-songwriter and performer

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