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Difference Between Sex and Gender

Sex vs Gender

Sex and gender, for most people, mean the same. However, there are various intricacies between these two terms that might indicate a very big difference between the two. So what exactly is sex? And what is gender? How they are different?

Sex

Sex is basically how a man is different from a woman physically. The major feature that determines the sex of a particular individual is there genitals. The man has a penis, the woman a vagina. Other physical features also would come into play like bone structure, facial hair, muscular build, among the many others. It pretty much boils down to what nature has decided when they were picking out your chromosomes.

Gender

Gender, on the other hand, is a more complicated topic. Although typically your gender will be defined by your sex, it also takes into account the social and cultural norms and their impact on you as an individual. In a nutshell, a person’s gender is what his or her mind chooses to express itself sexually and it is not only limited by biological aspects but by socio-cultural and environmental factors as well.

Difference between Sex and Gender

Although, for the most part, sex and gender are interchangeable, they are not exactly seen as the same. While a person’s sex is male because of his physical make-up, his gender might be completely different because of how and where he grew up. Even if a man undergoes any surgical procedure to alter his body, his sex will always remain as male. It is safe to assume then that gender is what the mind chooses to express itself sexually. Differentiating between the two is important as it can help a person realize his or her identity and not be constrained by the norms that would be detrimental to one’s growth.

Sex is what your body is and gender is what your mind thinks what your body is.

In brief:

• Sex is the physical manifestation of the body that is primarily defined by the genitals.

• Gender is the manifestation of what the mind thinks what the body is that is affected not only by the physical body, but also by socio-cultural and environmental factors as well.


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