Intersexuality – XXY

Mia Nikasimo writes weekly on transgender issues. Using the Argentinian film XXY as a point of reference she begins a discussion on intersex.

In XXY, a film from Argentina, Alex, the film’s protagonist, is a 14 year old intersex child who comes face to face with society’s prejudice.1 The close knit community of this small fishing village is populated by people this child would have viewed as neighbours. However because of the child’s intersexuality which in this case shows a female bodied child gradually turning male which is suggested abundantly throughout the film. The child’s secret is leaked somehow by an acquaintance and everyone is either curious, offended or out rightly oppressive towards Alex. Fearing their society’s reaction towards their child, the Alex’s parents invite a surgeon to see if the tide could be stopped. Under pressure even Alex seemed willing to give in but as long as the outcome is male rather than female gender identity, an already suggested gay sexuality in the mix (i.e. not lesbian as some might assume.) Although to my mind the film reflects society’s gender paranoia, I think it best that you judge it yourselves… How can a human child of fourteen be treated in the way depicted in the film does simply because of the child’s intersexed status? Continue reading Intersexuality – XXY