This glossary was written to help provide QTIPOC-specific meanings and words for many of our everyday conversations. It is, however, by no means comprehensive and we are constantly in the process of revising the definitions listed to make sure they best reflect what they intend to.
Search below to look for a specific definition, or alternatively let us know if you have any concerns or would like to suggest a term we may have missed.
Ableism : Discrimination and social prejudice against people with disabilities, of which may be cognitive, developmental, intellectual, mental, physical, sensory, or some combination of these in nature. In ableist societies, able-bodiedness is viewed as the norm; people with disabilities are understood as those that deviate from that norm.
Ageism : Casual and/or systematic stereotyping and discrimination against individuals or groups on the basis of their age.
Androgynous : 1. A gender expression that has elements of both masculinity and femininity; 2. Occasionally used in place of “intersex”.
BAME : An acronym for Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic, a term used to refer to members of non-white communities in the UK.
Bisexual : Although originally conceptualised as a term to describe those who experience romantic and/or sexual attraction towards men and women, the term has been redefined to describe one who is attracted to both their own gender as well as other genders, or to gender identities similar to their own and different from their own.
Biphobia : An aversion toward bisexuality and toward bisexual people as a social group or as individuals. It can take the form of denial that bisexuality is a genuine sexual orientation, or of negative stereotypes about people who identify as bisexual.
Black : A racial classification and identity that describes those who are decended (through one or more parents) from sub-saharan Africa.
BME : An initialism for Black and Minority Ethnic, another term used to refer to members of non-white communities in the UK.
Brown : A racial classification and identity that describes those who are decended (through one or more parents) from North Africa, Western Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Americas.
Butch : An identity or presentation of non-heteronormative, reclaimed, queer masculinity. Although commonly associated with masculine-presenting queer women, it’s used by many to describe a distinct gender identity and/or expression, and does not necessarily imply that one also identifies as a woman.
Cis : A prefix for people who have a gender identity that matches the sex that they were assigned at birth.
Cisnormativity : The assumption that all human beings are cisgender, i.e. have a gender identity which matches the sex they were assigned at birth.
Colourism : Prejudice or discrimination against individuals with a darker skin tone. It typically occurs among people of the same ethnic or racial group.
Coming out : When a person tells someone else about their identity as LGBTQ.
Disabled : A person with a cognitive, developmental, intellectual, mental, physical and/or sensory impairment, that can in some cases substantially affect their life activities. A disability may be present from birth or occur during a person’s lifetime.
Drag (drag king or drag queen) : Dressing and acting with exaggerated femininity or masculinity as a form of entertainment.
Fat shaming : The action or practice of expressing mockery or criticism about someone judged to be fat or overweight.
Feminism : A range of ideologies and social movements that share a common goal of defining, establishing and achieving political, economic, personal, and social rights for women.
Femininity : A set of attributes, qualities, behaviours and roles traditionally associated with girls and women.
Feminine-of-centre : Indicates a range of terms of gender identity and gender presentation for folks who present, understand themselves, and/or relate to others in a more feminine way, but who don’t necessarily identify as women.
Femme : Historically used in lesbian communities, the term femme has been increasingly used by members of the LGBTQ community to describe gender expressions that claim, reclaim and/or disrupt traditional constructs of femininity. The term can be associated with queer women, queer men, non binary and genderqueer folks.
Gay : A self-identifying man who primarily experiences romantic love and/or sexual attraction to other self-identifying men.
Gender binary : The assertion that there are only two genders: male and female.
Gender dysphoria : The distress a person experiences because their sex assigned at birth does not align with their gender identity.
Genderfluid : Refers to a gender identity or gender expression which varies over time.
Gender identity : A person’s internal sense of their own gender, whether male, female, non-binary or other.
Gender non-comforming (GNC) or gender variant : Someone who does not dress and/or behave according to typical cultural gender expectations.
Genderqueer : Embodying or performing gender as a lived experience in a way that is not prescribed by heteronormative or societal ideas based on what is considered feminine or masculine presentation.
Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC) : A certificate trans individuals require in order to have their gender legally recognised.
Gender stereotypes : The ways in which a society or communities expects people to behave according to their assumed gender.
Heteronormative : Refers to the assumption that all human beings are either male or female in both sex and gender, and that sexual and/or romantic attraction and activity only occurs, or is only normal, between heterosexual cis men and heterosexual cis women.
Heteropatriarchy : A socio-political system in which men and heterosexuality have primacy over other genders and over other sexual orientations.
Homophobia : Encompasses a range of negative attitudes and feelings toward homosexuality or people who are identified or perceived as being part of the LGBTQ community.
Imperialism : An action that involves a country (usually an empire or kingdom) extending its power and influence through colonisation, the use of military force, or other means.
Institutional Racism : A form of racism expressed which, covertly or overtly, resides in the policies, procedures, operations and culture of public or private institutions – reinforcing individual prejudices and being reinforced by them in turn. It is reflected in disparities regarding wealth, income, criminal justice, employment, housing, health care, political power and education, among other things.
Intergenerational : Relating to, involving, or affecting several generations.
Intersectionality : A theory with roots in Black Feminism, which considers the effects of race, class, gender, sexuality and other social identities and related systems of oppression as interlocking, rather than as mutually exclusive entities. Importantly, these intersecting identities cannot be separated from one another.
Intersex : Describes a person whose natal physical sex characteristics, such as their anatomy or chromosomes, are ambiguous in the context of the male/female sex binary. When an intersex infant is born with ambiguous external genitalia, parents and/or medical professionals typically assign them a binary sex and perform surgical operations to conform the infant’s body to that assignment. A person may not know they have intersex anatomy until they reach puberty and their body changes differently than expected, or until they find themselves infertile as an adult.
Justice : The legal and/or philosophical theory by which fairness is administered. What exactly constitutes as justice can vary greatly depending on the cultural or social context.
Lesbian : A self-identifying woman who primarily experiences romantic love and/or sexual attraction to other self-identifying women.
Liberation : The action of setting one free from oppression. This could be through seeking economic and social rights, political rights or equality.
LGBTQ : An initialism that stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer. The term is typically used to refer to anyone who identifies as non-heterosexual and/or non-cisgender, instead of exclusively to people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. Additionally, it is used as a descriptor of people or groups who identify as such, with links to the LGBTQ movement as well.
Masculine-of-centre : Indicates a range of terms of gender identity and gender presentation for folks who present, understand themselves, and/or relate to others in a more masculine way, but who don’t necessarily identify as men.
Masculinity : A set of attributes, qualities, behaviours and roles traditionally associated with boys and men.
Misogyny : The hatred of, contempt for, or prejudice against women.
Misogynoir : Misogyny directed towards black women, in which both race and gender play a role.
No Gender : Someone who identifies as having no gender or being without a gender identity.
Non-binary : The gender binary gives restricted options of female or male, to be feminine or masculine, or to present as a woman or man. Non-binary is a gender identity that cannot be coded in these binary ways and as a result, there are many different genders, and no single gender presentation an example.
Outed / Outing : When a LGBTQ person’s sexual orientation, gender identity or intersex status is disclosed to someone else without their consent.
Pansexual : The sexual, romantic or emotional attraction towards people regardless of their sex or gender identity. It may be considered a sexual orientation in its own right or a branch of bisexuality.
Patriarchy : A social system in which men hold primary power and predominate in roles of political leadership, moral authority and social privilege. With regards to the domain of the family, in patriarchal systems the fathers or father-figures also hold authority over women and children.
POC : An initialism used to abbreviate Person of Colour or People of Colour, which is used to describe any person who is not white.
Pronouns : The words used to refer to people’s gender, for example, ‘he’ or ‘she’, or the gender neutral ‘they’ or ‘zie’.
QTIPOC : An acronym used to abbreviate Queer Trans Intersex People of Colour, a specific ID that describes people who have heritages from continents of Africa, Asia, and Indigenous people of the Americas and Australia, and are invested in Queer politics and organising.
Queer : Sometimes used as an umbrella term of LGBTQ, but inversely is also used as a political identity that is affiliated with left wing, radical, anti-mainstream commercialisation of LGBTQ groups. Queer is also used to mean an attraction to different genders including your own but a sexual attraction that is not fixed to binary gendered sexualities, such as Lesbian or Gay, Women or Men, but could include those identities also.
Although it has since been reclaimed, due to its historical use as a derogatory term it is not necessarily embraced or used by all members of the LGBTQ community.
The term is also an academic theory that takes the premise of not being fixed in a binary way of thinking – such as attraction – but uses it in different academic applications to create or illustrate a multiplicity of theoretical outcomes, by bringing disparate ideas, objects, subjects together in ways that Queers them.
Race : The socially constructed classification of humans into groups based on physical traits (such as skin colour), ancestry, genetics or social relations, or the relations between them.
Racialised : To perceive, view, interpret or experience something in a racial context.
Racism : The prejudice, discrimination or antagonism directed toward someone of a different race, based on the belief that one’s own race is superior. Racism, as an ideology, exists in a society at both the individual and the institutional level. Consequently, the systemic nature of racism, as well as who holds the power to perpetuate it, is becoming more popular in mainstream discourses of the term.
Rainbow racism : Racism that takes place within the LGBTQ community.
Sex : Assigned to a person at birth on the basis of primary sex characteristics (genitalia) and reproductive functions.
Sexism / gender discrimination : Prejudice, stereotyping and/or discrimination based on a person’s sex or gender. Although sexism can in theory affect any gender, it is particularly documented as affecting self-identifying women and girls.
Sexualised : To perceive, view, interpret or experience something in a sexual context.
Sex work : The exchange of sexual services, performances, or products for material compensation.
Sex worker : A person who is employed in the sex industry.
Toxic masculinity : Emphasises the ideology and supposed importance of men maintaining a dominant, aggressive, unemotional and sexually aggressive attitude, both collectively and as individuals.
Trans : An abbreviation for transgender or transsexual.
Transphobia : Encompasses a range of negative attitudes and feelings toward transgender or transsexual people, or toward transsexuality.
Transgender : An umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from what is culturally typically associated with the gender/sex they were assigned at birth. People under the transgender umbrella may describe themselves using one or more of a wide variety of terms or may simply use transgender.
Transgender man or trans man : Someone who was assigned male at birth but who identifies as female.
Transgender woman or trans woman : Someone who was assigned female at birth but who identifies as male.
Transfeminine : To embody feminine energy whilst identifying as a trans person.
Transmasculine : To embody masculine energy whilst identifying as a trans person.
Transmisogyny : The unique discrimination and misogyny directed towards trans women.
Transsexual : An older term that refers to someone who has medically transitioned to live in a different gender. Not all trans people identify with this word.
White fragility : A state in which even a minimum amount of racial stress or discourse becomes intolerable, triggering a range of defensive moves. These moves could include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, or behaviours such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation.
Whiteness : The cultural and sociological aspects of people identified as white, which has historically been tied to social status and constructed as the norm and embodiment of dominant culture and ideologies.
Womanism : A social theory based on the racial and gender-based oppression of women of colour, but in particular that of black women. Womanism addresses the racist and classist aspects of white feminism and actively opposes separatist ideologies.
The term, coined by Alice Walker, arose during the early feminist movement which was largely led by middle-class heterosexual white women advocating for social change in the form of women’s suffrage. While the feminist movement focused on ending gender-based oppression, it largely ignored race and class-based oppression. The focus of the theology therefore is not on gender inequality, but race and class-based oppression.