Sleek #31 Autumn 2011 XX|XY
Things used to be so simple: there was man and there was woman. We still have man and woman today but you don’t always know which one’s which, and sometimes man and woman aren’t even sure themselves. Of course there have always been people who couldn’t be pigeonholed as one sex or the other, but they didn’t use to make such a thing about it. They’d make a career out of it instead, as a mutant fairground attraction or a shaman.
We at sleek, however, think it’s important that we should continue to be able to tell men and women apart into the future – not necessarily because media agencies differentiate target groups by the sex, we don’t have to worry about such things simply because our readership seems to have a healthy male to female ratio (that’s assuming our readers are stating their sex correctly, as least according to their own perception). No, it’s important because otherwise we could forget about the theme of this issue. “XX” and “XY”, after all, stand for the chromosomatic determination of the sexes in humans, and in most cases this can be clearly determined.
Ok, so a fair amount can happen between the moment of conception and the end of a full life, and this, of course, is what makes things so fascinating, but without norms there can be no exceptions. As long as there is still fun to be had swapping roles in the world of gender definition, or in our lack of orientation therein, we should make sure that a blurring of boundaries doesn’t get the upper hand – and in case you’re thinking this is a reactionary attempt to wing-clip individual freedoms, go ahead and try bringing up your child gender-free.
And by the way, while working on this issue we came to the realization that every person is happiest when they are able to accept what they are, both genetically and sexually. Even if this statement sounds like a limp platitude and our tolerance, hypocritical and superficial, we’re sticking to our guns. Whether you’re a man or a woman, or neither nor, we don’t give a monkey’s. The point is that you’re out there – and we have a reason to continue making this magazine.
Wishing you all the best from the sleek DNA,