Saris (סריס) is a gender from Jewish culture where one was identified as a male at birth, but develops female characteristics later in life. This was likely used to describe individuals with certain intersex conditions in which, upon puberty, one does not develop common male characteristics. There is also often a distinction made between a saris who is born naturally through certain intersex conditions (saris hamah), or a saris who was created through human intervention, through methods like castration (saris adam). In modern terms this can be interpreted either as a transgender woman, or an intersex individual. Some trans, non-binary, or intersex Jewish people find that the term saris fits their experience.
In Jewish sacred texts there are six different genders identified. These are:
- "Zachar", someone who is identified as male at birth and presents as male later in life. This would be considered to be a cisgender man today.
- "Nekeivah", someone who is identified as female at birth and presents as female later in life. This would be considered a cisgender women today.
- "Ay'lonit", someone who is identified as female at birth but shows male characteristics later in life. This can be considered a transgender man in today's terms.
- "Saris", someone who is identified as male at birth but shows female characteristics later in life. This can be considered a transgender woman in today's terms.
- "Androgynos", someone who has both male and female sexual characteristics. This would refer to certain intersex conditions, but in terms of gender in the modern day it is closest to bigender.
- "Tumtum" someone whose sexual characteristics are indeterminate or obscured. This would also refer to intersex conditions, but in terms of gender it is closest to agender.
Saris is a culture exclusive gender, specific to Jewish culture and should not be used by people not of that culture.
Flag[edit | edit source]
The saris flag was designed by Tumblr user Bigfootrights on November 8, 2019. The colors were chosen with homage to the nighttime. The gradient reflects the spectrum of identities that people who may be a saris can possess.