Sexuality pp 227-250 | Cite as

Transgendered people: the plasticity of gender

  • Chess Denman


Even the earliest written records (that is from roughly about 5000 years ago) contain evidence of variations in gender identity, including evidence of the existence of individuals we might now call intersexed or transgendered (Markowitz et al. 1999). In modern times the legal and medical treatment of both intersexed and transgendered people has sparked debate which has extended well beyond the bounds of the therapeutic and into the political realm. Transgendered and intersexed people can present therapists with a range of predicaments and dilemmas particularly if they are supposed to control access to certain treatments. In this chapter the spectrum of intersex and transgendered conditions is outlined. Then causal theories are reviewed followed by a preliminary discussion of direct treatment options. Political debates are aired next and this paves the way for a more differentiated discussion of the role and value of psychotherapeutic treatment.


Gender Identity Gender Dysphoria Gender Nonconformity Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Gender Reassignment 
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Copyright information

© Dr Chess Denman MBBS MRC Psych 2004

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  • Chess Denman

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