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Blanchard's transsexualism typology

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Blanchard's transsexualism typology is a proposed psychological typology of gender dysphoria, transsexualism, and fetishistic transvestism, created by sexologist Ray Blanchard through the 1980s and 1990s, building on the work of prior researchers, including his colleague Kurt Freund. Blanchard categorized trans women into two groups: homosexual transsexuals who are attracted exclusively to men and are feminine in both behavior and appearance; and autogynephilic transsexuals who are sexually aroused at the idea of having a female body.[1]

Blanchard's work has attracted significant controversy,[2][3] especially following the 2003 publication of J. Michael Bailey's book The Man Who Would Be Queen, which presented the typology to a general audience.[4][1][5][6][7][8] Critics of the typology include sexologists John Bancroft and Charles Allen Moser, psychologist Margaret Nichols,[7] and biologist and activist Julia Serano.[3][9] The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) objected to the inclusion of a mention of autogynephilia that was added to the DSM-5, calling it an unproven theory.[10][11][12]

Supporters of the typology include sexologists Bailey,[4]: 378  James Cantor,[13] Anne Lawrence,[4]: 386 [14] and bioethicist Alice Dreger. Supporters argue that the typology explains differences between the two groups in childhood gender nonconformity, sexual orientation, history of fetishism, and age of transition.[15][14]: 1–2  Blanchard's typology broke from earlier ones which "excluded the diagnosis of transsexualism" for arousal in response to cross-dressing, according to Lawrence.[14]: 37  Lawrence stated that, before Blanchard, the idea that arousal in response to cross-dressing or cross-gender fantasy meant that one was not transsexual was a recurring theme in scholarly literature.[14]: 37 

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Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria (GD) is the distress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity—their personal sense of their own gender—and their sex assigned at birth. The diagnostic label gender identity disorder (GID) was used until 2013 with the release of the diagnostic manual DSM-5. The condition was renamed to remove the stigma associated with the term disorder.

Kurt Freund

Kurt Freund

Kurt Freund was a Czech-Canadian physician and sexologist best known for developing the penile plethysmograph, research studies in pedophilia, and for the "courtship disorder" hypothesis as a taxonomy of certain paraphilias. After unsuccessful attempts to change men's sexual orientation, he advocated against conversion therapy and in favor of the decriminalization of homosexuality.

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual is a taxonomic category used in sexology, psychology, and psychiatry, to classify transgender or transsexual people who are attracted to members of the same biological sex. It classifies trans women attracted to men, based on assigned sex at birth, rather than gender identity.

J. Michael Bailey

J. Michael Bailey

John Michael Bailey is an American psychologist, behavioural geneticist, and professor at Northwestern University best known for his work on the etiology of sexual orientation. He maintains that sexual orientation is heavily influenced by biology and male homosexuality is most likely inborn. Bailey wrote The Man Who Would Be Queen, a book intended to explain the biology of male sexual orientation and gender to a general audience, focusing on gender nonconforming boys, gay men and transgender women. The book elicited reactions ranging from strong criticism for its coverage of transsexuals, to a nomination for an award, later retracted, from the Lambda Literary Foundation, an organization that promotes gay literature.

John Bancroft (sexologist)

John Bancroft (sexologist)

Dr John H.J. Bancroft is a physician who was Director of The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction at Indiana University from 1995 to 2004. He was a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Indiana University School of Medicine.

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser is an American physician specializing in transgender health, a clinical sexologist, sex therapist, and sex educator practicing in San Francisco, California. He is the author of numerous academic publications and books in the fields of transgender health, paraphilias including BDSM, and sexual medicine.

Julia Serano

Julia Serano

Julia Michelle Serano is an American writer, musician, spoken-word performer, trans–bi activist, and biologist. She is known for her transfeminist books Whipping Girl (2007), Excluded (2013), and Outspoken (2016). She is also a prolific public speaker who has given many talks at universities and conferences. Her writing is frequently featured in queer, feminist, and popular culture magazines.

DSM-5

DSM-5

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), is the 2013 update to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the taxonomic and diagnostic tool published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). In the United States, the DSM serves as the principal authority for psychiatric diagnoses. Treatment recommendations, as well as payment by health care providers, are often determined by DSM classifications, so the appearance of a new version has practical importance. The DSM-5 is the only DSM to use an Arabic numeral instead of a Roman numeral in its title, as well as the only living document version of a DSM.

James Cantor

James Cantor

James M. Cantor is an American-Canadian clinical psychologist and sexologist specializing in hypersexuality and paraphilias.

Anne Lawrence

Anne Lawrence

Anne Alexandra Lawrence is an American psychologist, sexologist, and former anesthesiologist who has published extensively on transsexuality.

Alice Dreger

Alice Dreger

Alice Domurat Dreger is an American historian, bioethicist, author, and former professor of clinical medical humanities and bioethics at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois.

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing is the act of wearing clothes usually worn by a different gender. From as early as pre-modern history, cross-dressing has been practiced in order to disguise, comfort, entertain, and self-express oneself.

Background

Observations suggesting that there exist multiple types of transsexualism date back to the early 20th century. Havelock Ellis used the terms eonism and sexo-aesthetic inversion to describe cross-gender feelings and behaviors involving "imitation of, and identification with, the admired object."[16] Magnus Hirschfeld classified transsexuals into four types: "homosexual", "bisexual", "heterosexual", and "automonosexual".[14]: 10  Hirschfeld used the term automonosexual to describe excitement in natal males to the thought or image of themselves as women.[17][18]

Beginning in the 1950s, clinicians and researchers developed a variety of classifications of transsexualism. These were variously based on sexual orientation, age of onset, and fetishism.[19] The idea that there are two types of trans women is a recurring theme in the clinical literature.[1] Prior to Blanchard's studies, the two groups were described as "homosexual transsexuals" if sexually attracted to men and "heterosexual fetishistic transvestites" if sexually attracted to women.[20] These labels carried a social stigma of mere sexual fetishism, and contradicted trans women's self-identification as "heterosexual" or "homosexual", respectively.[20]

In 1982, Kurt Freund and colleagues argued there were two distinct types of male-to-female transsexuals, each with distinct causes: one type associated with childhood femininity and androphilia (sexual attraction to men), and another associated with fetishism and gynephilia (sexual attraction to women).[19]: 533 [16]: 443  Freund stated that the sexual arousal in this latter type could be associated, not only with crossdressing, but also with other feminine-typical behaviors, such as applying make-up or shaving the legs.[18] Blanchard credited Freund with being the first author to distinguish between erotic arousal due to dressing as a woman (transvestic fetishism) and erotic arousal due to fantasizing about being female (which Freund called cross-gender fetishism).[16]: 443 

In 1989, Blanchard stated that when he began his studies, researchers had "identified a homosexual type of gender identity disturbance [which] occurs in homosexuals of both sexes. There is general agreement, moreover, on the clinical description of this syndrome as it appears in males and females".[21]: 316  According to Blanchard, there was consensus "that gender identity disturbance also occurs in males who are not homosexual but only rarely, if at all, in nonhomosexual females". Blanchard also stated "there is no consensus, however, on the classification of nonhomosexual gender identity disorders. Authorities disagree on the number of different syndromes, the clinical characteristics of the various types, and the labels used to identify them".[21]: 316 

Blanchard's research and conclusions came to wider attention with the publication of popular science books on transsexualism, including Men Trapped in Men's Bodies by sexologist and trans woman Anne Lawrence and The Man Who Would Be Queen by sexologist J. Michael Bailey, both of which based their portrayals of male-to-female transsexuals on Blanchard's taxonomy.[1][6][22] The concept of autogynephilia in particular received little public interest until Bailey's 2003 publication of The Man Who Would Be Queen, though Blanchard and others had been publishing studies on the topic for nearly 20 years.[6] Bailey's book was followed by peer-reviewed articles critiquing the methodology used by Blanchard.[6]

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Havelock Ellis

Havelock Ellis

Henry Havelock Ellis was an English physician, eugenicist, writer, progressive intellectual and social reformer who studied human sexuality. He co-wrote the first medical textbook in English on homosexuality in 1897, and also published works on a variety of sexual practices and inclinations, as well as on transgender psychology. He is credited with introducing the notions of narcissism and autoeroticism, later adopted by psychoanalysis.

Magnus Hirschfeld

Magnus Hirschfeld

Magnus Hirschfeld was a German physician and sexologist.

Social stigma

Social stigma

Social stigma is the disapproval of, or discrimination against, an individual or group based on perceived characteristics that serve to distinguish them from other members of a society. Social stigmas are commonly related to culture, gender, race, socioeconomic class, age, sexual orientation, body image, physical disability, intelligence or lack thereof, and health. Stigma can also be against oneself, stemming from negatively viewed personal attributes in a way that can result in a "spoiled identity".

Kurt Freund

Kurt Freund

Kurt Freund was a Czech-Canadian physician and sexologist best known for developing the penile plethysmograph, research studies in pedophilia, and for the "courtship disorder" hypothesis as a taxonomy of certain paraphilias. After unsuccessful attempts to change men's sexual orientation, he advocated against conversion therapy and in favor of the decriminalization of homosexuality.

Transvestic fetishism

Transvestic fetishism

Transvestic fetishism is a psychiatric diagnosis applied to men who are thought to have an excessive sexual or erotic interest in cross-dressing; this interest is often expressed in autoerotic behavior. It differs from cross-dressing for entertainment or other purposes that do not involve sexual arousal. Under the name transvestic disorder, it is categorized as a paraphilia in the DSM-5.

Anne Lawrence

Anne Lawrence

Anne Alexandra Lawrence is an American psychologist, sexologist, and former anesthesiologist who has published extensively on transsexuality.

J. Michael Bailey

J. Michael Bailey

John Michael Bailey is an American psychologist, behavioural geneticist, and professor at Northwestern University best known for his work on the etiology of sexual orientation. He maintains that sexual orientation is heavily influenced by biology and male homosexuality is most likely inborn. Bailey wrote The Man Who Would Be Queen, a book intended to explain the biology of male sexual orientation and gender to a general audience, focusing on gender nonconforming boys, gay men and transgender women. The book elicited reactions ranging from strong criticism for its coverage of transsexuals, to a nomination for an award, later retracted, from the Lambda Literary Foundation, an organization that promotes gay literature.

Research

Blanchard conducted a series of studies on people with gender dysphoria, analyzing the files of cases seen in the Gender Identity Clinic of the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry and comparing them on multiple characteristics.[14]: 10–15  Studying patients who had felt like a woman at all times for at least a year, he started with Hirschfeld's four types (based on sexual attraction to men, women, both, or neither), and then classified the patients accordingly based on their scores on measures of attraction to men and attraction to women.[16]: 444 

Blanchard then compared these four groups regarding how many in each group reported a history of sexual arousal together with cross-dressing. 73% of the heterosexual, asexual, and bisexual groups said they did experience such feelings, with these three groups being statistically indistinguishable from one another, but only 15% of the homosexual group did.[14]: 10  He concluded that asexual and bisexual transsexualism were variant forms of heterosexual transsexualism, with tranvestism being a related phenomenon.[16]: 444  He argued that the common feature among all these individuals was erotic arousal to the thought or image of oneself as a woman, and he coined the term autogynephilia to describe this.[16]: 444 

Blanchard reported finding that heterosexual male-to-females were significantly older than homosexual male-to-females (i.e., male-to-females attracted to males): the heterosexual male-to-females said they felt their first cross-gender wishes around the time they first cross-dressed, whereas the homosexual group said their cross-gender wishes preceded cross-dressing (more than 3 years on average). Where fetishistic arousal was acknowledged by over 80% of the heterosexual male-to-females, fewer than 10% of the homosexual group did.[14]: 14 

The age at which trans women referred themselves to explore sex reassignment and their self-ratings of childhood femininity were also studied. The androphilic (homosexual) group usually reported that they were quite feminine in childhood, and they first presented clinically at an average age of 26. The other group, made up of heterosexual, bisexual, and analloerotic patients, reported less childhood femininity—some may not have been especially masculine, but few, if any, had been extremely feminine—and presented clinically at the average age of 34.[23]: 71–72 

Blanchard and colleagues conducted a study in 1986 using phallometry (a measure of blood flow to the penis), demonstrating arousal in response to cross-dressing audio narratives among trans women. Although this study is often cited as evidence for autogynephilia, the authors did not attempt to measure subjects' ideas of themselves as women.[10]: 193 [24] This study has been cited by proponents of the theory to argue that gynephilic trans women who reported no autogynephilic interests were misrepresenting their erotic interests.[24] The authors concluded that gynephilic gender identity patients who denied experiencing arousal to cross-dressing were still measurably aroused by autogynephilic stimuli, and that autogynephilia among non-androphilic trans women was negatively associated with tendency to color their narrative to be more socially acceptable.[14]: 12–13 

Blanchard theorized that homosexual transsexualism was an extreme expression of homosexuality, considering there to be a continuum of phenomena from homosexuality alone, through gender dysphoric homosexuality, to transsexual homosexuality.[13]: 1634  Anne Lawrence argued that autogynephilic transsexualism shared a continuum with less severe forms of autogynephilia, such as partial autogynephilia.[14]: 180 

Bailey and his book, and Blanchard and his research, have since attracted intense criticism.[1][6][4]: 366  Some writers have criticized autogynephilia as being transphobic.[20] Thomas E. Bevan writes that the concept is insufficiently operationalizable and therefore does not qualify as a scientific theory or hypothesis.[10]: 193  Blanchard's findings have also been criticized on the grounds that they lack reproducibility and that they fail to control for the same traits occurring in cisgender women.[17] Trans author and biologist Julia Serano criticizes the conclusion of the 1986 phallometry study as unfalsifiable.[3] Clinical sexologist Charles Allen Moser writes that the 1986 study had methodological problems and that the reported data did not support the conclusion, stating that the measured arousal to cross-dressing situations was minimal and consistent with subjects' self-reported arousal.[24]

According to a 2016 review, structural neuroimaging studies seem to support Blanchard's prediction that androphilic and gynephilic trans women have different brain phenotypes. The authors state that more independent studies of gynephilic trans women are needed to fully confirm Blanchard's hypothesis, as well as "a specifically designed comparison of homosexual MtF, homosexual male, and heterosexual male and female people".[13]

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Analloeroticism

Analloeroticism

Analloeroticism is having no sexual interests in other people. Anil Aggrawal considers it distinct from asexuality and defines the latter as the lack of a sex drive. Analloerotics are unattracted to female or male partners, but not necessarily devoid of all sexual behaviour.

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing is the act of wearing clothes usually worn by a different gender. From as early as pre-modern history, cross-dressing has been practiced in order to disguise, comfort, entertain, and self-express oneself.

Continuum (measurement)

Continuum (measurement)

Continuum theories or models explain variation as involving gradual quantitative transitions without abrupt changes or discontinuities. In contrast, categorical theories or models explain variation using qualitatively different states.

Scientific theory

Scientific theory

A scientific theory is an explanation of an aspect of the natural world and universe that has been repeatedly tested and corroborated in accordance with the scientific method, using accepted protocols of observation, measurement, and evaluation of results. Where possible, theories are tested under controlled conditions in an experiment. In circumstances not amenable to experimental testing, theories are evaluated through principles of abductive reasoning. Established scientific theories have withstood rigorous scrutiny and embody scientific knowledge.

Hypothesis

Hypothesis

A hypothesis is a proposed explanation for a phenomenon. For a hypothesis to be a scientific hypothesis, the scientific method requires that one can test it. Scientists generally base scientific hypotheses on previous observations that cannot satisfactorily be explained with the available scientific theories. Even though the words "hypothesis" and "theory" are often used interchangeably, a scientific hypothesis is not the same as a scientific theory. A working hypothesis is a provisionally accepted hypothesis proposed for further research in a process beginning with an educated guess or thought.

Reproducibility

Reproducibility

Reproducibility, also known as replicability and repeatability, is a major principle underpinning the scientific method. For the findings of a study to be reproducible means that results obtained by an experiment or an observational study or in a statistical analysis of a data set should be achieved again with a high degree of reliability when the study is replicated. There are different kinds of replication but typically replication studies involve different researchers using the same methodology. Only after one or several such successful replications should a result be recognized as scientific knowledge.

Cisgender

Cisgender

Cisgender is a term used to describe a person whose gender identity corresponds to their sex assigned at birth. The word cisgender is the antonym of transgender. The prefix cis- is Latin and means 'on this side of'. The term cisgender was coined in 1994 and entered into dictionaries starting in 2015 as a result of societal changes in the way gender is conceived and discussed. The term has at times been controversial and subject to critique.

Julia Serano

Julia Serano

Julia Michelle Serano is an American writer, musician, spoken-word performer, trans–bi activist, and biologist. She is known for her transfeminist books Whipping Girl (2007), Excluded (2013), and Outspoken (2016). She is also a prolific public speaker who has given many talks at universities and conferences. Her writing is frequently featured in queer, feminist, and popular culture magazines.

Falsifiability

Falsifiability

Falsifiability is a standard of evaluation of scientific theories and hypotheses that was introduced by the philosopher of science Karl Popper in his book The Logic of Scientific Discovery (1934). He proposed it as the cornerstone of a solution to both the problem of induction and the problem of demarcation. A theory or hypothesis is falsifiable if it can be logically contradicted by an empirical test that can potentially be executed with existing technologies. Popper insisted that, as a logical criterion, it is distinct from the related concept "capacity to be proven wrong" discussed in Lakatos' falsificationism. Even being a logical criterion, its purpose is to make the theory predictive and testable, thus useful in practice.

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser is an American physician specializing in transgender health, a clinical sexologist, sex therapist, and sex educator practicing in San Francisco, California. He is the author of numerous academic publications and books in the fields of transgender health, paraphilias including BDSM, and sexual medicine.

Neuroimaging

Neuroimaging

Neuroimaging is the use of quantitative (computational) techniques to study the structure and function of the central nervous system, developed as an objective way of scientifically studying the healthy human brain in a non-invasive manner. Increasingly it is also being used for quantitative studies of brain disease and psychiatric illness. Neuroimaging is a highly multidisciplinary research field and is not a medical specialty.

Phenotype

Phenotype

In genetics, the phenotype is the set of observable characteristics or traits of an organism. The term covers the organism's morphology or physical form and structure, its developmental processes, its biochemical and physiological properties, its behavior, and the products of behavior. An organism's phenotype results from two basic factors: the expression of an organism's genetic code, or its genotype, and the influence of environmental factors. Both factors may interact, further affecting phenotype. When two or more clearly different phenotypes exist in the same population of a species, the species is called polymorphic. A well-documented example of polymorphism is Labrador Retriever coloring; while the coat color depends on many genes, it is clearly seen in the environment as yellow, black, and brown. Richard Dawkins in 1978 and then again in his 1982 book The Extended Phenotype suggested that one can regard bird nests and other built structures such as caddis-fly larva cases and beaver dams as "extended phenotypes".

Autogynephilia

Autogynephilia (derived from Greek for 'love of oneself as a woman'[24][a]) is the term Blanchard coined[1][25][6] for "a male's propensity to be sexually aroused by the thought of himself as a female",[24][26] intending for the term to refer to "the full gamut of erotically arousing cross-gender behaviors and fantasies".[24] Blanchard states that he intended the term to subsume transvestism, including for sexual ideas in which feminine clothing plays only a small or no role at all.[27] Other terms for such cross-gender fantasies and behaviors include automonosexuality, eonism, and sexo-aesthetic inversion.[25]

Development

Blanchard arrived at his theory of autogynephilia mainly by interpreting self-reports by trans women.[24] In a series of studies at the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry in the late 1980s, he gave questionnaires to gender-dysphoric patients, classing participants as "heterosexual", "asexual", "bisexual", or "homosexual" based on the results of two such questionnaires, the Modified Androphilia and Modified Gynephilia Scales.[16] Blanchard assessed autogynephilia by asking about erotic arousal in association with the fantasy of having various female features such as a vulva or breasts, and the fantasy of being admired as a female by another person.[14]: 15–16  Based on the results, Blanchard writes that the "heterosexual", "asexual", and "bisexual" groups were found to be more similar to each other than any was to the "homosexual" group, concluding that non-homosexual transsexuals, along with transvestites, shared a "history of erotic arousal in association with the thought or image of oneself as a woman".[16]

Following controversy over the portrayal of trans women in The Man Who Would Be Queen,[1] Blanchard distinguished between "the existence or nonexistence of autogynephilia", which he described as "settled", and "theoretical statements involving autogynephilia".[16] Examples of the latter included: (1) all gender-dysphoric males (including MTF transsexuals) who are not attracted to males are instead autogynephilic; (2) autogynephilia does not occur in natal females; (3) the desire for sex reassignment among some natal males is a form of internalized pair-bonding; (4) autogynephilia is a type of heterosexual impulse that also competes with heterosexuality; and (5) autogynephilia is a type of erotic target location error. Blanchard wrote that the accuracy of these theories needed further empirical research to resolve.[16]

Blanchard provides specific case examples to illustrate the autogynephilic sexual fantasies that people reported:

Philip was a 38-year-old professional man referred to the author's clinic for assessment ... Philip began masturbating at puberty, which occurred at age 12 or 13. The earliest sexual fantasy he could recall was that of having a woman's body. When he masturbated, he would imagine that he was a nude woman lying alone in her bed. His mental imagery would focus on his breasts, his vagina, the softness of his skin, and so on—all the characteristic features of the female physique. This remained his favorite sexual fantasy throughout his life.[16]

Types

Blanchard identified four types of autogynephilic sexual fantasy,[25] but stated that co-occurrence of types was common.[23]: 72–73 [14]: 19–20 

  • Transvestic autogynephilia: arousal to the act or fantasy of wearing typically feminine clothing
  • Behavioral autogynephilia: arousal to the act or fantasy of doing something regarded as feminine
  • Physiologic autogynephilia: arousal to fantasies of body functions specific to people regarded as female
  • Anatomic autogynephilia: arousal to the fantasy of having a normative woman's body, or parts of one[23]: 72–73 [14]: 19–20 

According to Blanchard, the transvestic-fetishistic type has tended to overshadow the others.[25] He states that anatomic autogynephilia is more associated with gender dysphoria than transvestic autogynephilia.[28][14]: 12–13  In a later study, a different pattern was reported in a sample of non-transgender autogynephilic men, where higher degrees of anatomic autogynephilia were associated with less gender dysphoria; here, it was instead interpersonal/behavioral and physiological autogynephilia that predicted gender dysphoria. The men in this latter sample were significantly more gender dysphoric than the non-transgender male baseline.[29]

Blanchard in 1993 and Lawrence in 2013 report that some natal males exhibit partial autogynephilia, being sexually aroused by the image or idea of having some but not all normative female anatomy, such as having breasts but retaining their penis and testicles.[15]: 593 [14]: 23–24, 189–191 [30]

Other authors have distinguished between behavioral autogynephilia and interpersonal autogynephilia, with the latter being arousal to being seen or admired as a woman or to having sex with men.[29]

Gender dysphoria and transition

The exact nature of the relationship between autogynephilia and gender dysphoria is unclear, and the desire to live as a woman often remains as strong or stronger after an initial sexual response to the idea has faded.[15] Blanchard and Lawrence argue that this is because autogynephilia causes a female gender identity to develop, which becomes an emotional attachment and something aspirational in its own right.[14]: 20–21  Lawrence writes that some transsexual women identify with autogynephilia, many of these feeling positively and some negatively as a result, with a range of opinions reflected as to whether or not this played a motivating role in their decision to transition.[14]: 55 

In the first peer-reviewed critique of autogynephilia research, Charles Allen Moser found no substantial difference between "autogynephilic" and "homosexual" transsexuals in terms of gender dysphoria, stating that the clinical significance of autogynephilia was unclear.[10]: 193  He writes that "although autogynephilia exists, the theory is flawed", and that "many MTFs readily admit that this construct describes their sexual interest and motivation. Nevertheless, it is not clear how accurately [Blanchard's theory] predicts the behavior, history, and motivation of MTFs in general".[24] Moser states that "many of the tenets of the theory are not supported by the existing data, or both supporting and contradictory data exist".[24] In a re-evaluation of the data used by Blanchard and others as the basis for the typology, he states, "it is not clear that autogynephilia is always present" in gynephilic trans women or "always absent" in androphilic trans women, that autogynephilia is significantly different than other paraphilias, and that there is "little reason to suggest that autogynephilia is the [primary] motivation" for gynephilic trans women to seek sex reassignment surgery (SRS). He concludes that the types identified by Blanchard and others may be primarily correlational, not causative, in which case "autogynephilia just becomes another trait" of some trans women, rather than their defining characteristic.[24]

In a 2011 study presenting an alternative to Blanchard's explanation, Larry Nuttbrock and colleagues reported that autogynephilia-like characteristics were strongly associated with a specific generational cohort as well as the ethnicity of the subjects; they hypothesized that autogynephilia may become a "fading phenomenon".[6][5]

Blanchard has suggested that "non-homosexual" trans women may deny autogynephilia in order to be seen as more socially acceptable and in order to secure a favorable recommendation for sex reassignment. While some trans women report autogynephilic arousal after their gender transition, many others do not. Blanchard and Lawrence argue that such trans women are nonetheless autogynephiles. Lawrence also argues that self-identified homosexual (androphilic) trans women who report histories of autogynephilia are mistaken. Moser disputes this, arguing that if such misrepresentations were common, the self-reported data on which the theory itself is based would be "similarly suspect". According to Moser: "It appears that substantial minorities of homosexual MTFs are autogynephilic and non-homosexual MTFs are not."[24]

Sexual orientation

Blanchard and Lawrence have classified autogynephilia as a sexual orientation. Blanchard wrote in 1993 that "autogynephilia might be better characterized as an orientation than as a paraphilia".[24][30] Blanchard attributed the notion of some cross-dressing men being sexually aroused by the image of themselves as female to Magnus Hirschfeld, who stated, "They [automonosexuals] feel attracted not by the women outside them, but by the woman inside them."[31][26] Blanchard and Lawrence argue that just like more common sexual orientations such as heterosexuality and homosexuality, it is not only reflected by penile responses to erotic stimuli, but also includes the capacity for pair bond formation and romantic love.[23]: 73, 75 [14]: 20–21 [32]

Later studies have found little empirical support for autogynephilia as a sexual identity classification,[20] and sexual orientation is generally understood to be distinct from gender identity.[33]: 94  Elke Stefanie Smith and colleagues describe Blanchard's approach as "highly controversial as it could erroneously suggest an erotic background" to transsexualism.[2]: 262 

Gynandromorphophilia, an attraction to people with both male and female anatomy, has been cited as the inverse of autogynephilia,[25] and has been reported as associated with it.[14]: 152, 155–156, 194–195 [34] Autogynephilic men are usually attracted to women and not to men.[34] Blanchard and Lawrence state that autogynephiles who report attraction to men are actually experiencing "pseudobisexuality", in which the person, rather than being attracted to both the male and female phenotypes, is aroused by a male partner validating their status as an attractive woman; this coexists with the person's basic attraction to women.[15]: 603 [14]: 16, 127–128 

According to Blanchard, "An autogynephile does not necessarily become sexually aroused every time he pictures himself as female or engages in feminine behavior, any more than a heterosexual man automatically gets an erection whenever he sees an attractive woman. Thus, the concept of autogynephilia—like that of heterosexuality, homosexuality, or pedophilia—refers to a potential for sexual excitation."[23]: 72 [27]

Erotic target location errors

Blanchard conjectured that sexual interest patterns could have inwardly instead of outwardly directed forms, which he called erotic target location errors (ETLE). Autogynephilia would represent an inwardly directed form of gynephilia, with the attraction to women being redirected towards the self instead of others. These forms of erotic target location errors have also been observed with other base orientations, such as pedophilia, attraction to amputees, and attraction to plush animals.

Anne Lawrence argued that these phenomena provide further support for autogynephilia typology:

I believe that the existence of these analogs of autogynephilic transsexualism calls into question the most influential biological and psychoanalytic theories of nonhomosexual MtF transsexualism, because such theories should also be able to account for these analogous phenomena but cannot easily do so. For example: It is plausible that hormonal abnormalities during prenatal development could result in a male-bodied person with a brain that had developed in a female-typical direction. It is less plausible that a prenatal developmental disturbance could result in a male-bodied person with a brain that had developed like that of an amputee or a plush animal. ...

I consider it more parsimonious to theorize that autogynephilic MtF transsexualism and the analogous conditions that exist in men who are sexually attracted to children, amputees, plush animals, and perhaps real animals, all represent manifestations of an unusual type of paraphilia in which affected men feel sexually aroused by the idea of impersonating or becoming whatever category of person or thing they find sexually attractive. Their paraphilic desires, in turn, often give rise to strongly held, highly valued alternative identities that ultimately become their dominant identities.[14]: 26 

Cisgender women

The concept of autogynephilia has been criticized for assuming that only trans women experience sexual desire mediated by their own gender identity.[20] Serano states that autogynephilia is similar to sexual arousal in cisgender women.[35] Two studies have tested the possibility that cisgender women can also experience autogynephilia. Jaimie Veale and colleagues reported in 2008 that an online sample of cisgender women commonly endorsed items on adapted versions of Blanchard's autogynephilia scales,[36] although they stated that it is unlikely that these women experienced autogynephilia in the way that Blanchard conceptualized it.[14]: 27  Moser created an Autogynephilia Scale for Women in 2009, based on items used to categorize MtF transsexuals as autogynephilic in other studies. A questionnaire that included the ASW was distributed to a sample of 51 professional women employed at an urban hospital; 29 completed questionnaires were returned for analysis. By the common definition of ever having erotic arousal to the thought or image of oneself as a woman, 93% of the respondents would be classified as autogynephilic. Using a more rigorous definition of "frequent" arousal to multiple items, 28% would be classified as autogynephilic.[37] While Blanchard stated that "autogynephilia does not occur in women", Moser writes that both studies found "significant numbers of women" scoring as autogynephilic, using measures similar to Blanchard's.[24]

In 2010, Lawrence criticized Moser's methodology and conclusions and stated that genuine autogynephilia occurs very rarely, if ever, in cisgender women as their experiences are superficially similar but the erotic responses are ultimately markedly different.[6][38] Her comment was rebutted by Moser who said that she had made multiple errors by comparing the wrong items.[39]

In 2013, Lawrence criticized both the Veale et al. and Moser studies, arguing that the scales they used failed to differentiate between arousal from wearing provocative clothing or imagining that potential partners find one attractive, and arousal merely from the idea that one is a woman or has a woman's body.[14]: 176  Francisco J. Sánchez and Eric Vilain state that, as with nearly all paraphilias, characteristics consistent with autogynephilia have only been reported among men.[6]

In 2022, based on application of Blanchard's original Core Autogynephilia Scale, Bailey and Hsu stated that "it remains unknown whether any natal females experience autogynephilia, as originally conceptualized by Blanchard".[40]

Discover more about Autogynephilia related topics

Sexual arousal

Sexual arousal

Sexual arousal describes the physiological and psychological responses in preparation for sexual intercourse or when exposed to sexual stimuli. A number of physiological responses occur in the body and mind as preparation for sexual intercourse, and continue during intercourse. Male arousal will lead to an erection, and in female arousal the body's response is engorged sexual tissues such as nipples, vulva, clitoris, vaginal walls, and vaginal lubrication. Mental stimuli and physical stimuli such as touch, and the internal fluctuation of hormones, can influence sexual arousal.

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria (GD) is the distress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity—their personal sense of their own gender—and their sex assigned at birth. The diagnostic label gender identity disorder (GID) was used until 2013 with the release of the diagnostic manual DSM-5. The condition was renamed to remove the stigma associated with the term disorder.

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser

Charles Allen Moser is an American physician specializing in transgender health, a clinical sexologist, sex therapist, and sex educator practicing in San Francisco, California. He is the author of numerous academic publications and books in the fields of transgender health, paraphilias including BDSM, and sexual medicine.

Paraphilia

Paraphilia

Paraphilia is the experience of intense sexual arousal to atypical objects, situations, fantasies, behaviors, or individuals. It has also been defined as sexual interest in anything other than a consenting human partner.

Sexual orientation

Sexual orientation

Sexual orientation is an enduring pattern of romantic or sexual attraction to persons of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or to both sexes or more than one gender. These attractions are generally subsumed under heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality, while asexuality is sometimes identified as the fourth category.

Magnus Hirschfeld

Magnus Hirschfeld

Magnus Hirschfeld was a German physician and sexologist.

Sexual identity

Sexual identity

Sexual identity is how one thinks of oneself in terms of to whom one is romantically and/or sexually attracted. Sexual identity may also refer to sexual orientation identity, which is when people identify or dis-identify with a sexual orientation or choose not to identify with a sexual orientation. Sexual identity and sexual behavior are closely related to sexual orientation, but they are distinguished, with identity referring to an individual's conception of themselves, behavior referring to actual sexual acts performed by the individual, and sexual orientation referring to romantic or sexual attractions toward persons of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, to both sexes or more than one gender, or to no one.

Phenotype

Phenotype

In genetics, the phenotype is the set of observable characteristics or traits of an organism. The term covers the organism's morphology or physical form and structure, its developmental processes, its biochemical and physiological properties, its behavior, and the products of behavior. An organism's phenotype results from two basic factors: the expression of an organism's genetic code, or its genotype, and the influence of environmental factors. Both factors may interact, further affecting phenotype. When two or more clearly different phenotypes exist in the same population of a species, the species is called polymorphic. A well-documented example of polymorphism is Labrador Retriever coloring; while the coat color depends on many genes, it is clearly seen in the environment as yellow, black, and brown. Richard Dawkins in 1978 and then again in his 1982 book The Extended Phenotype suggested that one can regard bird nests and other built structures such as caddis-fly larva cases and beaver dams as "extended phenotypes".

Pedophilia

Pedophilia

Pedophilia is a psychiatric disorder in which an adult or older adolescent experiences a primary or exclusive sexual attraction to prepubescent children. Although girls typically begin the process of puberty at age 10 or 11, and boys at age 11 or 12, criteria for pedophilia extend the cut-off point for prepubescence to age 13. A person must be at least 16 years old, and at least five years older than the prepubescent child, for the attraction to be diagnosed as pedophilia.

Erotic target location error

Erotic target location error

Erotic target location error (ETLE) is a hypothesized paraphilia defined by having a sexual preference or strong sexual interest in features that are somewhere other than on one's sexual partners.

Acrotomophilia

Acrotomophilia

Acrotomophilia is a paraphilia in which an individual expresses strong sexual interest in amputees. It is a counterpart to apotemnophilia, the desire to be an amputee.

Anne Lawrence

Anne Lawrence

Anne Alexandra Lawrence is an American psychologist, sexologist, and former anesthesiologist who has published extensively on transsexuality.

Homosexual vs. autogynephilic transsexuals

Blanchard studied two groups of trans women: those who came out as transgender earlier in life and were mostly if not exclusively attracted to men (androphilic), and those who came out later in life and were mostly if not exclusively attracted to women (gynephilic), in order to understand what made them different from one another.[6] He uses the terms homosexual and non-homosexual for these two groups, relative to the person's sex assigned at birth, not their current gender identity.[24] He proposed that many late-transitioning trans women were driven to do so not by gender dysphoria, but by an extreme paraphilia characterized by an erotic interest in oneself as a woman (autogynephilia).[6]

Blanchard said that one type of gender dysphoria/transsexualism manifests itself in individuals who are almost if not exclusively attracted to men (homosexual transsexuals averaged a Kinsey scale measurement of 5–6 and six is the maximum, or a 9.86±2.37 on the Modified Androphilia Scale[41][42]), whom he referred to as homosexual transsexuals, adopting Freund's terminology.[43] The other type he defined as including those who are attracted almost if not exclusively to females (gynephilic), attracted to both males and females (bisexual), and attracted to neither males nor females (analloerotic or asexual); Blanchard referred to this latter set collectively as the non-homosexual transsexuals.[44][45] Blanchard says that the "non-homosexual" transsexuals (but not the "homosexual" transsexuals) exhibit autogynephilia,[43] which he defined as a paraphilic interest in having female anatomy.[26][27]

According to the typology, autogynephilic transsexuals are attracted to femininity while homosexual transsexuals are attracted to masculinity. However, a number of other differences between the types have been reported. Homosexual transsexuals usually begin to seek sex reassignment surgery in their mid-20s, while autogynephilic transsexuals usually seek clinical treatment in their mid-30s or even later.[15] Anne Lawrence states that autogynephilia tends to appear along with other paraphilias.[23]: 79  J. Michael Bailey argued that both "homosexual transsexuals" and "autogynephilic transsexuals" were driven to transition mainly for sexual gratification, as opposed to gender-identity reasons.[1]

Anne Lawrence, a proponent of the concept,[22][35] argues that homosexual transsexuals pursue sex reassignment surgery out of a desire for greater social and romantic success.[24] Lawrence has proposed that autogynephilic transsexuals are more excited about sexual reassignment surgery than homosexual transsexuals. She states that homosexual transsexuals are typically ambivalent or indifferent about SRS, while autogynephilic transsexuals want to have surgery as quickly as possible, are happy to be rid of their penis, and proud of their new genitals.[32]

According to Blanchard, most homosexual transsexuals describe themselves as having been very feminine from a young age.[45] Lawrence argues that homosexual transsexuals are motivated by being very feminine in both behavior and appearance, and by a desire to romantically and sexually attract (ideally very masculine) men, while autogynephilic transsexuals are motivated by their sexual desire and romantic love for being women.[32] Lawrence also states that homosexual transsexuals who seek sex reassignment pass more easily as women.[23]: 70 

According to Bailey and Lawrence, transsexuals who are active on the internet are overwhelmingly autogynephilic.[46]

Discover more about Homosexual vs. autogynephilic transsexuals related topics

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual is a taxonomic category used in sexology, psychology, and psychiatry, to classify transgender or transsexual people who are attracted to members of the same biological sex. It classifies trans women attracted to men, based on assigned sex at birth, rather than gender identity.

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria (GD) is the distress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity—their personal sense of their own gender—and their sex assigned at birth. The diagnostic label gender identity disorder (GID) was used until 2013 with the release of the diagnostic manual DSM-5. The condition was renamed to remove the stigma associated with the term disorder.

Paraphilia

Paraphilia

Paraphilia is the experience of intense sexual arousal to atypical objects, situations, fantasies, behaviors, or individuals. It has also been defined as sexual interest in anything other than a consenting human partner.

Kinsey scale

Kinsey scale

The Kinsey scale, also called the Heterosexual–Homosexual Rating Scale, is used in research to describe a person's sexual orientation based on one’s experience or response at a given time. The scale typically ranges from 0, meaning exclusively heterosexual, to a 6, meaning exclusively homosexual. In both the male and female volumes of the Kinsey Reports, an additional grade, listed as "X", indicated "no socio-sexual contacts or reactions" (asexuality). The reports were first published in Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) by Alfred Kinsey, Wardell Pomeroy, and others, and were also prominent in the complementary work Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953).

Trans men

The typology is largely about trans women.[22] Richard Ekins and Dave King state that female-to-male transsexuals (trans men) are absent from the typology,[22] while Blanchard, Cantor, and Katherine Sutton distinguish between gynephilic and androphilic trans men. They state that gynephilic trans men are the counterparts of androphilic trans women, that they experience strong childhood gender nonconformity, and that they generally begin to seek sex reassignment in their mid-20s. They describe androphilic trans men as a rare but distinct group who say they want to become gay men, and, according to Blanchard, are often specifically attracted to gay men. Cantor & Sutton state that while this may seem analogous to autogynephilia, no distinct paraphilia for this has been identified.[15]: 603–604 [47]

Inclusion in the DSM

In 1980 in the DSM-III, a new diagnosis was introduced, that of "302.5 Transsexualism" under "Other Psychosexual Disorders". This was an attempt to provide a diagnostic category for gender identity disorders.[48] The diagnostic category, transsexualism, was for gender dysphoric individuals who demonstrated at least two years of continuous interest in transforming their physical and social gender status.[49] The subtypes were asexual, homosexual (same "biological sex"), heterosexual (other "biological sex") and unspecified.[48] This was removed in the DSM-IV, in which gender identity disorder replaced transsexualism. Previous taxonomies, or systems of categorization, used the terms classic transsexual or true transsexual, terms once used in differential diagnoses.[50]

The DSM-IV-TR included autogynephilia as an "associated feature" of gender identity disorder[17] and as a common occurrence in the transvestic fetishism disorder, but does not classify autogynephilia as a disorder by itself.[51]

Moser advances three reasons to question the inclusion of autogynephilia as a sign of a clinical disorder: (1) a focus on autogynephilia may have overshadowed other factors involved in gender dysphoria, creating "a new stereotype" which patients seeking sex reassignment must adhere to; (2) some proponents of the theory suggest that trans women who do not report sexual interest consistent with their typing according to the theory are mistaken or "in denial", which is disrespectful and potentially harmful; and (3) the theory could imply that "all gender manifestations [are] secondary to sexual orientation".[24]

The paraphilias working group on the DSM-5, chaired by Ray Blanchard, included both with autogynephilia and with autoandrophilia as specifiers to transvestic disorder in an October 2010 draft of the DSM-5. This proposal was opposed by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), citing a lack of empirical evidence for these specific subtypes.[11][12][10]: 201  With autoandrophilia was removed from the final draft of the manual. Blanchard later said he had initially included it to avoid criticism: "I proposed it simply in order not to be accused of sexism [...] I don't think the phenomenon even exists."[52] When published in 2013, the DSM-5 included With autogynephilia (sexual arousal by thoughts, images of self as a female) as a specifier to 302.3 Transvestic disorder (intense sexual arousal from cross-dressing fantasies, urges or behaviors); the other specifier is With fetishism (sexual arousal to fabrics, materials or garments).[53]

Discover more about Inclusion in the DSM related topics

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria (GD) is the distress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity—their personal sense of their own gender—and their sex assigned at birth. The diagnostic label gender identity disorder (GID) was used until 2013 with the release of the diagnostic manual DSM-5. The condition was renamed to remove the stigma associated with the term disorder.

Differential diagnosis

Differential diagnosis

In healthcare, a differential diagnosis is a method of analysis of a patient's history and physical examination to arrive at the correct diagnosis. It involves distinguishing a particular disease or condition from others that present with similar clinical features. Differential diagnostic procedures are used by clinicians to diagnose the specific disease in a patient, or, at least, to consider any imminently life-threatening conditions. Often, each individual option of a possible disease is called a differential diagnosis.

Transvestic fetishism

Transvestic fetishism

Transvestic fetishism is a psychiatric diagnosis applied to men who are thought to have an excessive sexual or erotic interest in cross-dressing; this interest is often expressed in autoerotic behavior. It differs from cross-dressing for entertainment or other purposes that do not involve sexual arousal. Under the name transvestic disorder, it is categorized as a paraphilia in the DSM-5.

DSM-5

DSM-5

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), is the 2013 update to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the taxonomic and diagnostic tool published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). In the United States, the DSM serves as the principal authority for psychiatric diagnoses. Treatment recommendations, as well as payment by health care providers, are often determined by DSM classifications, so the appearance of a new version has practical importance. The DSM-5 is the only DSM to use an Arabic numeral instead of a Roman numeral in its title, as well as the only living document version of a DSM.

World Professional Association for Transgender Health

World Professional Association for Transgender Health

The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), formerly the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association (HBIGDA), is a professional organization devoted to the understanding and treatment of gender identity and gender dysphoria, and creating standardized treatment for transgender and gender variant people. WPATH was founded in September 1979 by endocrinologist and sexologist Harry Benjamin, with the goal of creating an international community of professionals specializing in treating gender variance.

Fetishism

Fetishism

A fetish is an object believed to have supernatural powers, or in particular, a human-made object that has power over others. Essentially, fetishism is the attribution of inherent value, or powers, to an object.

Criticism

General

Advocates for the transgender community have challenged Blanchard's and Bailey's explanation of transgender women's motivations to seek sex reassignment.[54] Trans activists and scholars have argued that the theory unduly sexualizes trans women's gender identity.[55]: 1729 [56] Philosopher Matt Drabek writes that Blanchard's work threatens to undo the advances made by feminist, queer, and transgender advocacy groups in separating gender identity and sexual orientation from biological sex.[52] Arlene Istar Lev says, "Many transwomen find Blanchard's theories insulting, and his insistence that these are evidence-based scientific truths, has only further enraged both the professional and activist communities".[56] According to Simon LeVay, some fear that the concept of autogynephilia will make it harder for gynephilic or "non-classical" MtF transsexuals to receive sex reassignment surgery.[57] Blanchard, Bailey, and Lawrence have each argued that any trans woman who would benefit from SRS should receive it.[4]: 415 

Serano

Critics of the theory include transfeminists such as Julia Serano and Talia Mae Bettcher.[20] Serano writes in the International Journal of Transgenderism that there were flaws in Blanchard's original papers, including that they were conducted among overlapping populations primarily at the Clarke Institute in Toronto without nontranssexual controls, that the subtypes were not empirically derived but instead were "begging the question that transsexuals fall into subtypes based on their sexual orientation," and that further research had found a non-deterministic correlation between cross-gender arousal and sexual orientation.[3] She states that Blanchard did not discuss the idea that cross-gender arousal may be an effect, rather than a cause, of gender dysphoria, and that Blanchard assumed that correlation implied causation.[3] She describes the typology as flawed, unscientific, and needlessly stigmatizing.[9]

Serano also states that the wider idea of cross-gender arousal was affected by the prominence of sexual objectification of women, accounting for both a relative lack of cross-gender arousal in transsexual men and similar patterns of autogynephilic arousal in non-transsexual women.[3] She criticised proponents of the typology, claiming that they dismiss non-autogynephilic, non-androphilic transsexuals as misreporting or lying while not questioning androphilic transsexuals, describing it as "tantamount to hand-picking which evidence counts and which does not based upon how well it conforms to the model",[3] either making the typology unscientific due to its unfalsifiability, or invalid due to the nondeterministic correlation that later studies found.[3] Serano says that the typology undermined lived experience of transsexual women, contributed to pathologisation and sexualisation of transsexual women, and the literature itself fed into the stereotype of transsexuals as "purposefully deceptive", which could be used to justify discrimination and violence against transsexuals.[3] According to Serano, studies have usually found that some non-homosexual transsexuals report having no autogynephilia.[3]

Bettcher

Talia Mae Bettcher, based on her own experience as a trans woman, has critiqued the notion of "autogynephilia," and "target errors" generally, within a framework of "erotic structuralism," arguing that the notion conflates essential distinctions between "source of attraction" and "erotic content," and "(erotic) interest" and "(erotic) attraction," thus misinterpreting what she prefers to call, following Serano, "female embodiment eroticism." She maintains that not only is "an erotic interest in oneself as a gendered being," as she puts it, a non-pathological and indeed necessary component of regular sexual attraction to others, but within the framework of erotic structuralism, a "misdirected" attraction to oneself as postulated by Blanchard is outright nonsensical.[58]

Disputed terminology

Blanchard's terminology has been described as confusing and controversial among transsexuals seeking sex reassignment surgery[42] and as archaic.[59] Frank Leavitt and Jack Berger write: "Transsexuals, as a group, vehemently oppose the homosexual transsexual label and its pejorative baggage. As a rule, they are highly invested in a heterosexual life-style and are repulsed by notions of homosexual relations with males. Attention from males often serves to validate their feminine status."[42]

Trans sociologist and sexologist Aaron Devor wrote, "If what we really mean to say is attracted to males, then say 'attracted to males' or androphilic ... I see absolutely no reason to continue with language that people find offensive when there is perfectly serviceable, in fact better, language that is not offensive."[60] Still other transsexuals are opposed to any and all models of diagnosis which allow medical professionals to prevent anyone from changing their sex, and seek their removal from the DSM.[61]

Linguist Bruce Bagemihl criticized the use of the terms "homosexual" and "non-homosexual" to refer to transsexuals by their assigned sex.[62] In 2008, sexologist John Bancroft expressed regret for having used this terminology, which was standard when he used it, to refer to transsexual women, and that he now tries to use words more sensitively.[63]

O'Donnabhain v. Commissioner

In the 2010 U.S. Tax Court case O'Donnabhain v. Commissioner, the Internal Revenue Service cited Blanchard's typology as justification for denying a transgender woman's tax deductions for medical costs relating to treatment of her gender identity disorder, claiming the procedures were not medically necessary.[64] The court found in favor of the plaintiff, Rhiannon O'Donnabhain, ruling that she should be allowed to deduct the costs of her treatment, including sex reassignment surgery and hormone therapy.[65] In its decision, the court declared the IRS's position "at best a superficial characterization of the circumstances" that was "thoroughly rebutted by the medical evidence".[66][67]

Transphobia

Julia Serano has written that trans-exclusionary radical feminists, or "gender critical" feminists, started embracing Blanchard's autogynephilia theory starting in the 2000's.[9] One early proponent of the autogynephilia theory was radical feminist Sheila Jeffreys.[9] The concept has been used to imply that trans women are sexually deviant men.[9][68] The autogynephilia theory became popular on "gender critical" websites such as 4thWaveNow, Mumsnet, and the Reddit community r/GenderCritical.[9]

According to an October 2018 review of anti-LGBT activities by the Southern Poverty Law Center, both Ray Blanchard and J. Michael Bailey have written articles for 4thWaveNow, which it describes as an anti-trans website.[69] According to a study of that and other rhetoric, "Bailey and Blanchard's work has long been criticised for perpetuating stereotypes and prejudices against trans women, notably suggesting that LGBQ trans women's primary motivation for transitioning is sexual arousal."[70] The study refers to autogynephilia as a discredited theory.[70]

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the autogynephilia theory has been promoted by anti-LGBT hate groups.[69][71][72] These include Family Research Council (FRC), United Families International (UFI), and the American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds).[69][71][72] In a May 2018 report, the Southern Poverty Law Center referred to Blanchard as an anti-trans psychologist.[72]

Discover more about Criticism related topics

Queer

Queer

Queer is an umbrella term for people who are not heterosexual or cisgender. Originally meaning "strange" or "peculiar", queer came to be used pejoratively against those with same-sex desires or relationships in the late 19th century. Beginning in the late 1980s, queer activists, such as the members of Queer Nation, began to reclaim the word as a deliberately provocative and politically radical alternative to the more assimilationist branches of the LGBT community.

Arlene Istar Lev

Arlene Istar Lev

Arlene Istar Lev is a North American clinical social worker, family therapist, and educator. She is an independent scholar, who has lectured internationally on topics related to sexual orientation and gender identity, sexuality, and LGBTQ families.

Julia Serano

Julia Serano

Julia Michelle Serano is an American writer, musician, spoken-word performer, trans–bi activist, and biologist. She is known for her transfeminist books Whipping Girl (2007), Excluded (2013), and Outspoken (2016). She is also a prolific public speaker who has given many talks at universities and conferences. Her writing is frequently featured in queer, feminist, and popular culture magazines.

Begging the question

Begging the question

In classical rhetoric and logic, begging the question or assuming the conclusion is an informal fallacy that occurs when an argument's premises assume the truth of the conclusion, instead of supporting it.

Correlation does not imply causation

Correlation does not imply causation

The phrase "correlation does not imply causation" refers to the inability to legitimately deduce a cause-and-effect relationship between two events or variables solely on the basis of an observed association or correlation between them. The idea that "correlation implies causation" is an example of a questionable-cause logical fallacy, in which two events occurring together are taken to have established a cause-and-effect relationship. This fallacy is also known by the Latin phrase cum hoc ergo propter hoc. This differs from the fallacy known as post hoc ergo propter hoc, in which an event following another is seen as a necessary consequence of the former event, and from conflation, the errant merging of two events, ideas, databases, etc., into one.

Sexual objectification

Sexual objectification

Sexual objectification is the act of treating a person solely as an object of sexual desire. Objectification more broadly means treating a person as a commodity or an object without regard to their personality or dignity. Objectification is most commonly examined at the level of a society, but can also refer to the behavior of individuals and is a type of dehumanization.

Cherry picking

Cherry picking

Cherry picking, suppressing evidence, or the fallacy of incomplete evidence is the act of pointing to individual cases or data that seem to confirm a particular position while ignoring a significant portion of related and similar cases or data that may contradict that position. Cherry picking may be committed intentionally or unintentionally.

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual

Homosexual transsexual is a taxonomic category used in sexology, psychology, and psychiatry, to classify transgender or transsexual people who are attracted to members of the same biological sex. It classifies trans women attracted to men, based on assigned sex at birth, rather than gender identity.

Aaron Devor

Aaron Devor

Aaron H. Devor, is a Canadian sociologist and sexologist known for researching transsexuality and transgender communities. Devor has taught at the University of Victoria since 1989 and is the former dean of graduate studies. Devor is the current Research Chair in Transgender Studies at the University of Victoria, and the Founder & Academic Director of The Transgender Archives at the University of Victoria Libraries. Maclean's, a Canadian weekly news magazine, described Devor as "an internationally respected expert on gender, sex and sexuality."

Bruce Bagemihl

Bruce Bagemihl

Bruce Bagemihl is a Canadian biologist, linguist, and author of the book Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity.

John Bancroft (sexologist)

John Bancroft (sexologist)

Dr John H.J. Bancroft is a physician who was Director of The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction at Indiana University from 1995 to 2004. He was a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Indiana University School of Medicine.

O'Donnabhain v. Commissioner

O'Donnabhain v. Commissioner

O'Donnabhain v. Commissioner 134 T.C. 34 (2010) is a case decided by the United States Tax Court. The issue for the court was whether a taxpayer who has been diagnosed with gender identity disorder can deduct sex reassignment surgery costs as necessary medical expenses under 26 U.S.C. § 213. The IRS argued that such surgery is cosmetic and not medically necessary. On Feb 2, 2010 the court ruled that O'Donnabhain should be allowed to deduct the costs of her treatment for gender-identity disorder, including sex-reassignment surgery and hormone treatments. In its decision, the court found the IRS position was "at best a superficial characterization of the circumstances" that is "thoroughly rebutted by the medical evidence".

Source: "Blanchard's transsexualism typology", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 27th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blanchard's_transsexualism_typology.

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Notes
  1. ^ Greek autos 'self'; gyne 'woman'; philia 'love'[25]
References
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Bancroft, John (2009). "Transgender, gender nonconformity and transvestism". Human Sexuality and its Problems (3rd ed.). Elsevier. pp. 290–291. ISBN 978-0-443-05161-6. Controversy over [Blanchard's] division into two types peaked with Bailey's publication of his book The Man who would be Queen: the Science of Gender Bending and Transsexualism (2003), which caused anger and outrage in the transgender community and disapproval among some clinicians working in this field.
  2. ^ a b Smith, Elke Stefanie; et al. (2015). "The transsexual brain – A review of findings on the neural basis of transsexualism". Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews. 59: 251–266. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2015.09.008. ISSN 1873-7528. PMID 26429593. S2CID 23913935.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Serano, J. M. (2010). "The Case Against Autogynephilia" (PDF). International Journal of Transgenderism. 12 (3): 176–187. doi:10.1080/15532739.2010.514223. S2CID 16456219. There are few concepts within the fields of transgender studies and human sexuality that are more controversial than autogynephilia.
  4. ^ a b c d e Dreger, Alice D. (June 2008). "The controversy surrounding 'The man who would be queen': a case history of the politics of science, identity, and sex in the Internet age". Archives of Sexual Behavior. 37 (3): 366–421. doi:10.1007/s10508-007-9301-1. PMC 3170124. PMID 18431641.
  5. ^ a b Nuttbrock, Larry; et al. (2011). "A Further Assessment of Blanchard's Typology of Homosexual Versus Non-Homosexual or Autogynephilic Gender Dysphoria". Archives of Sexual Behavior. 40 (2): 247–257. doi:10.1007/s10508-009-9579-2. PMC 2894986. PMID 20039113.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Sánchez, Francisco J.; Vilain, Eric (2013). "Transgender Identities: Research and Controversies". In Patterson, Charlotte J.; D'Augelli, Anthony R. (eds.). Handbook of Psychology and Sexual Orientation. Oxford University Press. pp. 47–48. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199765218.003.0004. ISBN 978-0-1997-6521-8.
  7. ^ a b Nichols, Margaret (2014). "A Review of 'Men Trapped in Men's Bodies: Narratives of Autogynephilic Transsexualism"'". Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy. 40 (1): 71–73. doi:10.1080/0092623X.2013.854559. S2CID 143006887. Blanchard and Lawrence have come under attack, especially since the publication of J. Michael Bailey's controversial book, The Man Who Would be Queen.
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External links

The dictionary definition of autogynephilia at Wiktionary

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