Skip to main content

The Hijra are a 4,000-year-old (!) transgender people from Southeast Asia.

The Hijra are a transgender community with a history of more than 4,000 years. Many people believe that the members of this community have magical powers.

The members of the Hijra are of the opinion that they are neither man nor woman. Instead, they count themselves as part of the so-called "third sex", which is also repeatedly mentioned in this country.

On the outside, however, the hijra appear clearly masculine. Accordingly, they do not try to dress or appear neutral.

Those who want to belong to the Hijra have to be castrated in the first step and can then be adopted.

What sounds particularly mystical and special can become a real challenge. Because: society's opinion has changed significantly over time. The "magical powers" that were always talked about in connection with this people no longer play too big a role for many people in Southeast Asia.

Many Hijra today are discriminated against and excluded from society. Those who deal with Aids infected, may no longer belong to the hijra community. Due to the lowered status and because of the comparatively low Position within society, there is a great danger that those affected will eventually become impoverished because they cannot find a job and are marginalised.

The treatment of the Hijra is an interesting demonstration of how the position of a particular group can change over time and the impact of a change in values within society.