Starry, Starry Night – the short life of Herculine Barbin

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Herculine Barbin’s birthday – commemorated every year as Intersex Day of Remembrance

Almost 150 years after Herculine’s death intersex people ourselves are reframing the language and understanding about what it means to be intersex, what it means to embody diversity that remains both known of, yet unspoken.

It is intersex advocates and activists who are challenging the language of yesteryear, and present-day clinical hegemony; to help secure the right for people born intersex to live in a future free of the prejudice that so blighted Herculine Barbin’s life, and that continues to motivate pre-emptive clinical interventions on anyone born intersex to this day.

Herculine Barbin’s birthday of 8 November is celebrated every year as Intersex Day of Solidarity, or Intersex Day of Remembrance.


First published on Intersex Day website

Also translated to Spanish