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Hermaphrodites

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Ion Zone
575877.  Sun Jun 28, 2009 3:36 pm Reply with quote

A hermaphrodite is a creature, including some humans, with no fully defined gender or aspects of both. Resent research suggests that one way they can be created is through, for lack of a better description, an egg deciding to be twins but never committing for one reason or another. This can result in a hermaphrodite, but can also produce people with two distinctive sets of DNA, which has resulted in children born naturally being taken away from their parents because their DNA does not match the mother's.

Hermaphrodites are common in nature, there are many creatures with no fixed gender or which are both, plants are normally hermaphrodites, being able to reproduce on their own, but I am more interested in accidental hermaphrodites as we have done the natural kind.

 
Posital
586560.  Sun Jul 19, 2009 4:49 pm Reply with quote

Dandelions can pollinate themselves.

If they fail to do that - they have viable seeds regardless.

 
Ameena
586574.  Sun Jul 19, 2009 5:23 pm Reply with quote

Is something with the characteristics of both sexes not also called "androgynous"? Or is that somehow a completely different thing to...err...hermaphrodite-ness.

 
Sadurian Mike
586579.  Sun Jul 19, 2009 5:32 pm Reply with quote

Androgyny is more usually related to humans having characteristics of both sexes (rather than none at all) and was used for a while to denote a hermaphrodite.

I believe that the term is not in favour now though.

 
Ion Zone
586580.  Sun Jul 19, 2009 5:33 pm Reply with quote

Androgynous means that either both genders look alike, or is used to describe someone who could be either male or female (Or a hermaphrodite, though most people don't think that). There are plenty of males who look naturally feminine or females who look masculine, in fact you could describe babies as androgynous as it tends to be quite hard to tell what they are unless the parents give visual clues (normally pink or blue clothes).

*Edit*

Mike beat me to it. :P

 
Ian Dunn
586679.  Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:54 am Reply with quote

One common problem concerning hermaphrodites is pronouns. Personally I prefer to use "Shi" for "He/She" and "Hir" for "Him/Her".

 
Ellie
601320.  Wed Aug 19, 2009 2:03 pm Reply with quote

A protogynous or sequentially hermaphroditic fish is a fish that changes sex when it reaches 80% of its maximum body size, and 2.5 times its age at maturity. Species include:

- Dusky Grouper Epinephelus marginatus (female > male) Mediterranean
- Black Grouper Mycteroperca bonaci (female > male) Caribbean
- Striped Sea Bream Lithognathus mormyrus (male > female) Canary Islands/East Adriatic

Sequential hermaphrodism is also known as dichogamy. Apparently this also happens with certain plants and molluscs.

http://www.zoo.ox.ac.uk/group/west/pdf/Allsop&West_03.pdf

 
Jenny
601609.  Thu Aug 20, 2009 7:28 am Reply with quote

Ellie wrote:
A protogynous or sequentially hermaphroditic fish is a fish that changes sex when it reaches 80% of its maximum body size, and 2.5 times its age at maturity.


So if it were a person, it would be like one of us changing sex in our mid-thirties, unless we stayed really skinny?

 
Ellie
601625.  Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:37 am Reply with quote

80% of our maximum body size.. would be around age 16 for humans, wouldn't it? And that's nowhere NEAR 2.5 times our age of maturity. Makes you realise how incredibly slow we are to ripen..!

I wonder why this never occurs in mammals?

 
Celebaelin
611363.  Fri Sep 11, 2009 10:16 am Reply with quote

A report in the Sydney Daily Telegraph indicates IAAF tests have shown that 800m runner Caster Semenya is a hermaphrodite with no womb or ovaries but internal testes. The implications of this 'inter-gender condition' are unsure at this juncture but the South Africans have taken the news rather badly.

Quote:
South African officials have stepped up their defence of Caster Semenya, warning of a "third world war" if the row over her sex stops her competing.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/athletics/8249948.stm

It seems unlikely that she will be stripped of her medal from Berlin but the IAAF are seeking advice from a panel of experts as to how best to ajudicate on the matter.

Sydney Daily Telegraph 11th Sept
Sydney Daily Telegraph 12th Sept
Times
Guardian
Mail
Sun

 
costean
611388.  Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:23 am Reply with quote

There have been other cases similar to this. One of the most recent was that of Indian runner Santhi Soundarajan who was barred from competing in 2006.

It is not new though, in 1950 Foekje Dillema was banned for life under highly controversial circumstances.

I know nothing of the science behind these procedures, but it seems that these tests have changed considerably over the last 60 years. Can anyone explain in layman's terms?

 
Davini994
611444.  Fri Sep 11, 2009 1:33 pm Reply with quote

It does look not cut and dried as yet. The serious sources, the Times and The Guardian, don't actually make the claim explicitly... the BBC 'understands' that the results will show intersex status so that's pretty likely based on history.

 
Ion Zone
611528.  Fri Sep 11, 2009 3:37 pm Reply with quote

It would be a very, very, big mistake to stop her running nowadays, the transgender community with roll over them like a tank.

 
Rudolph Hucker
611584.  Fri Sep 11, 2009 7:30 pm Reply with quote

Ion Zone wrote:
It would be a very, very, big mistake to stop her running nowadays, the transgender community with roll over them like a tank.


Clearly you are writing in a language which is closely related to English, is there a key that will unlock the meaning of the words you put together?

 
djgordy
611648.  Sat Sep 12, 2009 3:18 am Reply with quote

Celebaelin wrote:
A report in the Sydney Daily Telegraph indicates IAAF tests have shown that 800m runner Caster Semenya is a hermaphrodite with no womb or ovaries but internal testes.


An anagram of Caster Semenya's name is "yes a secret man".

 

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