- (in many languages) a set of classes that together include all nouns, membership in a particular class being shown by the form of the noun itself or by the form or choice of words that modify, replace, or otherwise refer to the noun, as, in English, the choice of he to replace the man, of she to replace the woman, of it to replace the table, of it or she to replace the ship. The number of genders in different languages varies from 2 to more than 20; often the classification correlates in part with sex or animateness. The most familiar sets of genders are of three classes (as masculine, feminine, and neuter in Latin and German) or of two (as common and neuter in Dutch, or masculine and feminine in French and Spanish).
- one class of such a set.
- such classes or sets collectively or in general.
- membership of a word or grammatical form, or an inflectional form showing membership, in such a class.
Origin of gender1
usage note for gender
People increasingly recognize that a complex spectrum between male and female exists not only mentally, psychologically, and behaviorally, but also anatomically—there have always been intersex people. The conflation of gender with sex, though historically common, is now often criticized because it is seen by some to be insensitive or dehumanizing.
People who do not question their assigned gender are usually referred to as cisgender, or just cis— as in a cis male or a cis female. Using cis is a way to refer to these individuals without implying that cisgender people are the only norm. Those who don't identify with the gender assigned to them at birth are often referred to using the umbrella term transgender, though not everyone labeled in this way accepts the designation. The term transgender includes both binary trans people and those who are outside of the male–female binary in some way, including nonbinary and genderqueer people.
After realizing their gender, many transgender people may change the way they dress, speak, or otherwise present themselves. Some may transition medically through surgery, hormone replacement therapy, and other procedures. Some may want to change the language people use to refer to them, including things like given name and pronouns as well as gender labels. This array of life experiences has resulted in a veritable explosion of new, or newly adapted, vocabulary.
OTHER WORDS FROM gendergen·der·less, adjective
WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH gendergender , sex
Words nearby gender
Other definitions for gender (2 of 2)
How to use gender in a sentence
I think there’s a lot of talk about trying to figure out a way to make restaurants more equitable, meaning equitable among gender, among races, more equitable among workers that are there.Tom Colicchio Hopes (and Fears) COVID-19 Will Change the Restaurant Industry|Pallabi Munsi|September 16, 2020|Ozy
After the story was published she said in a note to staff and investors her issue had nothing to do with gender.The losses continue to pile up for hedge fund king Ray Dalio|Bernhard Warner|September 15, 2020|Fortune
Studies have also shown it helps if the person doing the intervention shares characteristics, such as gender or race, with the people for whom the messaging is targeted.Why Coming Up With Effective Interventions To Address COVID-19 Is So Hard|Neil Lewis Jr. (firstname.lastname@example.org)|September 14, 2020|FiveThirtyEight
Combining Glemaud’s joyful, gender-neutral, body positive approach with the clean knitwear designs he’s become known for, the designer created three knit bands.
Those gender disparities largely persisted even when the researchers zoomed in on households where men and women both held jobs that could be completed at home.How COVID-19 worsened gender inequality in the U.S. workforce|Sujata Gupta|September 9, 2020|Science News
There was a lot of positive feedback from people interested in non-gender binary people.
Gender roles exceed the biological circumstances of childbirth and they are, perhaps, much less likely to change.
There have been changes in our society on issues of sexual and gender justice.Do LGBTs Owe Christians an Olive Branch? Try The Other Way Around|Jay Michaelson|December 14, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The unfortunate reality is that race, gender, and economic status do matter when justice is meted out.The Post-Brown and Garner Question: Who ‘Deserves’ to Die?|Goldie Taylor|December 9, 2014|DAILY BEAST
That they will leverage their voices and their power to make real change to improve gender diversity.
They are sometimes represented as being of both sexes, all having the power to change their gender.Ancient Faiths And Modern|Thomas Inman
Though we may not have followed the Greek rule, we to the present day always look upon a ship as of the feminine gender.How Britannia Came to Rule the Waves|W.H.G. Kingston
The sacred scriptures, in Hebrews, bestow on him the masculine gender, and so do the authors of the Greek version.
But the gender must be changed, when it becomes necessary to speak of separate numbers.
It is only in the conjugations that the principle of gender becomes lost in that of vitality.
British Dictionary definitions for gender
Derived forms of gendergenderless, adjective
Word Origin for gender
Cultural definitions for gender
A grammatical category indicating the sex, or lack of sex, of nouns and pronouns. The three genders are masculine, feminine, and neuter. He is a masculine pronoun; she is a feminine pronoun; it is a neuter pronoun. Nouns are classified by gender according to the gender of the pronoun that can substitute for them. In English, gender is directly indicated only by pronouns.