Fa'afafine: An antinomy of gender roles not understood outside of Samoa
Trans Health Australia on planetransgender's facebook page a revealing look at what it means to be a Fa'afafine in Samoa.
There are up to 3000 Fa'afafine – men raised as girls – currently living in Samoa. The Feed's Patrick Abboud investigates this complex and often misunderstood cultural phenomenon.
While it is not widely known in Australia, there is a third gender of people who make up an important and accepted part of Samoan culture.
Samoan Fa'afafine – or “Fafa” – are men who are raised as females and identify with that gender.
They mostly have relationships with heterosexual men and are generally not gay.
In Samoa, gender identity is largely based on a person’s role in the family and if one family has numerous sons and no daughters, it's not uncommon to raise one of the boys as a girl.