Gender Variance in Childhood: a Literature Review beyond the Clinic




Research on gender variance in childhood has for many years been limited to analyzing health issues and has therefore mostly been implemented in the medical and psychiatric field. The social and family context was generally neglected and only in recent years has it received the attention of researchers from the social sciences. Although research of this type is mostly limited to the North American context, this literature review aims to highlight the work that has been done so far. The importance of these selected studies lies on the experience of families of gender-variant children as told to us by the parents themselves. The work highlights the practical and discursive strategies implemented by parents to make sense of their children’s experience in order to guarantee their well-being and create a space where gender variance is considered a normal and legitimate life experience. Absences and limitations have been identified for future work.

Keywords: transgender children, parenting, parenthood, gender identity, childhood.

Author Biography

Michela Mariotto, Universitat Autónoma Barcelona

Phd student. Dottorato in Persona e Società nel Mondo Contemporaneo.

Dipartimento di Psicologia Sociale.