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Cisgender (pronounced /ˈsɪsdʒɛndər/) is an adjective used in the context of gender issues and counselling to refer to a class of gender identities formed by a match between an individual's gender identity and the behavior or role considered appropriate for one's sex.[1] Cisgender is a neologism that means "someone who is comfortable in the gender they were assigned at birth", according to Calpernia Addams.[2] "Cisgender" is used to contrast "transgender" on the gender spectrum.[citation needed]

A more popular term is "gender normative".[3] However, this term is problematic because it is inherently biased.citation needed



The word has its origin in the Latin-derived prefix cis, meaning "to/this the near side" as in the cis-trans distinction in chemistry. In this case, "cis" refers to the alignment of gender identity with assigned gender. There is some controversy as to the appropriateness of the term given its utterly relativistic implications with respect to gender identity (i.e. an attempt to destroy the notion of the normative and replace it with two equally marked relatives).

Internet use

The word cisgender has been used on the internet since at least 1994, when it appeared in the alt.transgendered usenet group in a post by Dana Leland Defosse.[4] Defosse does not define the term and seems to assume that readers are already familiar with it. It may also have been independently coined a year later: according to Donna Lynn Matthews, the charter maintainer of the usenet group, the word was coined in 1995 by Carl Buijs, a transsexual man from the Netherlands.[5] In April 1996, Buijs said in a usenet posting, "As for the origin, I just made it up. I just kept running into the problem of what to call non-trans people in various discussions, and one day it just hit me: non-trans equals cis. Therefore, cisgendered."[6]

Academic use

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