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Femininity is a descriptive gender term associated with the culturally defined characteristics ascribed to females, women and girls. Femininity as a construct includes ideas of physical appearance, mannerisms, ways of relating, and all-encompassing ideas of a female gendered self. Gender is considered a social construct, separate from the biological state of being assigned the female sex at birth, which is determined by external physical characteristics and chromosomal status. Although feminine gender is separate from biological sex, they are interrelated and often interplay with one’s sense of gender identity. Femininity is not inherently linked to femaleness, although in dominant cultures, gender and sex are seen as analogous parallel binary constructs—meaning that femaleness typically equals femininity and maleness equals masculinity. Although gender and sex are often conflated, ...

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