Last Updated: May 17, 2016

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Definition - What does Two-Spirit(ed) mean?

Two spirit is an indigenous term used to refer to people who are said to possess both the masculine and feminine spirit. It is used by some indigenous peoples to describe their sexual identity and gender. The term is often an umbrella definition for same-sex attraction, gender variance, and what we define in Western culture as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, gender queer, cross-dressers. The term can also be used for those who have multiple gender identities. Poly relationships are also included under the definition. The term was introduced in 1990 during the Third Annual Inter-tribal Native American, First Nations, Gay, and Lesbian American Conference held in Winnipeg, Canada.

Kinkly explains Two-Spirit(ed)

Two spirit an umbrella term meant to encompass the variance of sexuality and gender. The concept that one can possess both a feminine and masculine spirit in one body indicates the multiplicity of identities that one can have.

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