On Thursday, National Geographic's editor-in-chief Susan Goldberg announced the title of their upcoming special January issue over Twitter; It's called "Gender Revolution," and it is a surprising departure from what National Geographic is usually known for: close-up shots of exotic animals, and far-away landscapes. And while most outlets are raving about the revolutionary cover, I'm more excited to delve deep into an issue that will explore the infinitude of the gender spectrum.
According to an article by NBC, the upcoming issue will examine the multitude of ways gender impacts societies around the world, discussing the rituals of manhood and womanhood and talking to people who don't identify with the gender binary. The issue will also open with a glossary of terms related to gender identity, including "genderfluid" and "intersex".
Also accompanying the issue is a two-hour documentary hosted by Katie Couric (also titled "Gender Revolution") in which she interviews parents of trans kids, people undergoing gender confirmation surgery, and people who are intersex. One of the characters in the documentary is a transgender nine-year-old named Avery; she is also featured on the cover of the magazine and is the first trans person to do so in the magazine's history.
Speaking to NBC Out, Susan Goldberg explained the decision to create an issue exploring gender: "We wanted to look at how traditional gender roles play out all over the world, but also look into gender as a spectrum. There's lots of coverage on celebrities, but there wasn't an understanding on real people and the issues we face every day in classrooms or workplaces in regards to gender."
There is a lot promised in that statement and undeniably a lot at stake, considering the many narratives and identities National Geographic is taking on in their new issue. But from what I've seen so far, I've never been more excited to purchase and read a magazine.
Check out "Gender Revolution" when it's set to hit news stands on December 27, or order it over the phone by calling 1-800-777-2800.