This wonderful antique porcelain figurine is probably a souvenir from the mid 1800s. It’s a ‘portrait’ of the famous Siamese twins Chang and Eng Bunker. The Bunker’s performed throughout the mid 1800’s and had 21 children combined. Change and Eng passed away 1874 at the age of 62.
The original Siamese twins Chang and Eng Bunker (1811–1874), were born in Siam (Thailand). The brothers traveled the world for many years as performers. (or freaks) Chang and Eng were joined at the torso by a band of flesh and they had fused livers.. Due to the brothers’ fame and the rarity of the condition, the term “Siamese twins” is still used as a synonym for conjoined twins.
Before Christianity hit, what is nowadays, the USA the Native Americans used to know more than two genders, they came up with about five. We feel that is such a great concept; it seems like less fuss to have more genders than only two, more accurate and even more sophisticated. All these ancient genders can be compared to todays LBGTQ (but they are a) Community and, as we all know, are not seen as actual genders like the Two Spirited persons.
<We’wha, a Zuni Lhamana (Two-Spirit), circa 1886. (photographer unknown – The Library at The College of Staten Island of the City University of New York)
We’wha (1849–1896) was a Zuni Native American from New Mexico. She was the most famous lhamana, a traditional Zuni gender role, now described as mixed-gender or Two-Spirit. Read the story of We’whahere on Wikipedia
“Two Spirits refers to a person who has both a masculine and a feminine spirit, and is used by some First Nations people to describe their sexual, gender and/or spiritual identity. As an umbrella term it may encompass same-sex attraction and a wide variety of gender variance, including people who might be described in Western culture as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, gender queer, cross-dressers or who have multiple gender identities.” (read more lgbtqhealth.ca) Continue reading →