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Masculine-of-center is a descriptive term used to denote lesbians, queer women, transgender people and other nonconforming individuals whose gender identity lies closer to the masculine end of the gender identity scale. This scale assumes that feminine lies at one end and masculine lies at the other, with an even mix of masculinity and femininity in the center.
The term was created by B. Cole of the Brown Boi Project. Masculine-of-center is often shortened to the acronym MoC. It is the opposite of feminine-of-center.
People who identify as masculine-of-center may also identify with other gender and sexuality-based labels, including butch, trans-masculine, tomboy, stud, androgynous, non-binary, and aggressive/AG. Masculine-of-center is a more inclusive label than these terms though because it recognizes people who feel more masculine than feminine of all genders and sexualities. It also does not carry the stigma that some of these labels can carry.
People who identify as masculine-of-center also do not have to identify with a specific degree of masculinity. They can just be somewhere on the masculine side of the gender scale, no matter how close to the center of the scale that is.
Identifying as masculine-of-center can be liberating as it can encourage people to present in a way that feels more natural for them than wearing dresses, styling their hair long, and adhering to other conventions for women. Many masculine-of-center individuals say their presentation is practical, an expression of their true selves, or a way to signal their queerness to others. However, the masculine-of-center community is still struggling for visibility as society can be slow to understand and embrace the way these female or nonconforming individuals present themselves.
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