Masculinity and Pregnancy

Masculine pregnancy is contested terrain. While medical/legal frameworks for the most part presume that body parts determine sex, which determines gender, pregnant butch women, transmasculine people (i.e., people assigned female at birth who identify with masculinity), and trans men challenge this rigid gender binary and subsequently the communities, services, and institutions they encounter. This entry explores the experience, significance, and social implications of masculine pregnancy.1

In North American culture, assumptions about sex, gender, and reproduction are so naturalized that they typically go unnoticed. Lara Karaian, a criminologist focused on gender and sexuality studies, argues that repronormativity (i.e., the inevitability and naturalness of gendered assumptions regarding reproduction, and the binding of identities to bodies) is more powerful than heteronormativity. The assumptions of what Judith Butler calls the ...

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