Stealth (Transgender Passing)

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  • In the context of gender identity, the term passing refers to a transgender person’s ability to be perceived in accordance with their gender identity. Most often, this translates to a transgender man being socially perceived as a cisgender man or a transgender woman being socially perceived as a cisgender woman. For example, an individual who is categorized as “male” at birth but who later comes to gender identify as a woman rather than a man would be said to be “passing” if people generally recognize and acknowledge her, socially, as a woman. This entry discusses transgender passing and the reasons a person might choose not to identify as transgender in some situations.

    Being socially perceived in accordance with one’s gender identity depends on a constellation of ...

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