Xentorns: A symbolic transgender?

The Joy of Painting

The Joy of Painting (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As I am a creator of the setting and the creator of the Xentorn race it seems odd I should write an essay asking if the race is symbolic of something, but truth be told creators and authors do sometimes put symbolism in places unintentionally on a conscious level, but on an unconscious one we totally meant to do that; other times it’s, in the immortal words of Bob Ross, a happy accident.

The argument regarding these pink/purple skinned empaths is the simple fact that, while they have male and female on a biological level and words to denote the two sexes, they only have one gender and it’s female.  Their language has but one pronoun and they are adamant that in all languages with a feminine pronoun that it be what’s used to translate their own, though they make no insistence in how a person addresses them in conversation in those languages — a male Xentorn is happily enough “he” when speaking to you or I as simple concession to our grammar norms, but is always “she” in his (or is it her?) own language.

Now I could argue that, no.  Xentorns just look at the world in a way that says that the core, heart, spirit of all living beings is female and that pronouns are references to the Self rather than the being that is incarnate before you and thus they don’t see a point if having a word for he/him/his.  Too I could argue that there is no transgenderism in their basic make up since the species doesn’t argue with anyone except linguists translating Xentoran texts over pronouns — Humans have words for him and her, they’re cool with this and won’t tell you not to (well, most won’t).

But that isn’t really being fair to the underlying argument:  are they a symbol of transgenderism given that they believe that, in the end, they are female regardless of sex?  Socially they’re all genderless — fashion is dictated by what’s between one’s legs only in a pragmatic sense same goes for the shape of one’s hips and chest; besides that a great portion of Xentoran fashion is rather unisex loose and flowing garments that reveal the body through being sheer rather than by clinging.

Certainly there’s an argument for their androgyny which is, frankly, undeniable.

I won’t answer here if they are or are not symbolic of anything.  The reason is simple:  if they are, it wasn’t intended, so I’d be applying literary analysis crap to my own work which gives me a headache (and given that one such technique is called “death of the author” I find morbid and creepy enough when other people do it … it feels suicidal to attempt it on myself).

I will say that I am, myself, not gender-normal for a male born and raised in the United States during this last part of the 20th Gregorian century and first part of the 21st.  I do like and do things considered quite feminine and will unabashedly admit that I tend to envy the women I know for various things.  If we accept that, on the spectrum of gender, I do not align perfectly with my sex, then on a subconsious level, yes the Xentorns could possibly be some kind of projection of a desire for an entire race and culture of transgender beings.  Certainly it did lead to some very curious contemplations on whether or not the race has any incidents of, and if so to what extent, of transsexualism.  That, however, is pure speculation as we do not pin down demographic statistics since they’re quite irrelevant to anything — there’s never going to be a Universal Nexus story about every Xentorn in the universe and until there are the only thing that’s important is — does the race have transsexuals?  The answer, by the way, is yes because their brains are not too dissimilar from our own and there’s a difference in one part in cisgendered males/females that is the “wrong” way round in a lot of transsexuals, and by that alone there must be, I’m just not going to contemplate their commonality or rarity because it doesn’t matter — you want a transsexual Xentorn in your story or game, go for it — they exist.

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