This article interrogates West and ZimmermanÂ’s Doing Gender paradigm by examining the Muxes of JuchitÃ¡n, a little known third gender in El Istmo de Tehuantepec, Oaxaca MÃ©xico. After presenting preliminary findings based on personal interviews with forty-two muxes and forty-eight community members, distinguishing between muxes and gays and describing the wide variation in the muxe lifestyle, the essay concludes that muxes are a third sex/gender category that is actively redoing the prevailing Western gender binary as well as traditional Mexican conceptions of gender and sexuality. They are an indigenous third sex/gender category, which is less about Western conceptions of sexuality, sexual identity, or doing transgender and more about retaining the language, cultural categories, practices, and worldviews of indigenous communities.
Hombres Mujeres: An Indigenous Third Gender
By Alfredo Mirandé, 2015