In a bid to sensitize people on the stereotypes associated with gender binary, Rituparna Neog, a queer rights activist based in Assam, spoke vastly on the issue at a function organized by the P.G. Department of English of Sonapur College on Wednesday.
The programme was organized by the college authorities in collaboration with the Internal Quality Assurance Cell (IQAC) and Women’s Cell.
The topic of the programme was “Beyond Gender Binary: A Journey Towards Inclusion” and the prime speaker was Ritupara Neog, who is the Director of AKAM Foundation and Associate Vice Chairman of Transgender Welfare Board, Assam.
The aim of the topic is to try and break the stereotypes associated with the gender binary. During her speech, Neog explained about the social stigma, conflicts, acceptance associated with the gender binary and has requested all the sufferers to be brave and self reliant.
The gender binary describes the inaccurate concept that gender is catergorized into only two distinct form (i.e man/woman). Neog emphasized that many gender expansive identities exist either between or outside of gender binary, all of which speak to an experience of gender that is not simply male or female.
Some of these gender-expansive identities are -
genderfluid - (Someone who is fluid - also called gender fluid -- is a person whose gender identity (the gender they identify with most) is not fixed. It can change over time or from day-to-day).
genderqueer - (The term genderqueer means someone who does not follow binary gender norms. They may be non-binary, agender, pangender, genderfluid, or another gender identity.)
gender neutral – People often use the word to mean more or less the same: genderless, genderfree)
Further, in the programme, Neog asked people to be respectful and supportive of non-binary people if they come across them.
The programme was attended by students and teachers of the college – all of whom participated in active interactions and discussions.