Will you make transsexual Elves canon in your games ?


If people are considered with anti-trans bias they should remember that the claim that gender is purely a social invention, not something that has an innate biological origin at all, are essentially arguing that there is no solid basis for being transgender. That strikes me as anti-transgender bias. It reduces it from being a very powerful force (the correction of a mismatch between one's biological/innate sex and the outward physical attributes) to being a matter of fashion that's dictated by social programming. That strikes me as a reductionist stance along the lines of the thoroughly debunked belief that the percentage of gay people born, per capita, in a culture is determined by how positive the culture views gayness.

You asked me why I discussed the things I did. I tried to contribute a bit of what I know and have considered to the discussion. On the first page I saw the claim that gender is a social construct, a common claim. It's not that simple, though. People worry about stereotyping, but that claim is an oversimplification. The blank slate is still very popular but it has been disproven. Parents, for instance, are often shocked to learn that their parenting is not often as influential as they think in a variety of developmental areas. Yes, it has a strong influence in certain areas but peers can exert a stronger influence and innate genetic personality is much stronger than most know. Many other psychological concepts continue to be accepted as common sense, even if they have been disproven, like the catharsis hypothesis. The evidence shows that, rather than reducing negative feelings and behavior, catharsis therapy (like screaming into a pillow or breaking tennis racquets) behaviors serve as practice for more negative behaviors and feelings. The Cognitive Behavioral Model in psychology is illustrative in that our future behavior is strongly guided by the practice we have already had. In that respect, certainly, it suggests why socialization can be quite powerful. Also, environmental factors make a difference. But, the third part of the model is genetics/physiology.

The concept of elves isn't merely imagination. It comes from a long folklore tradition. It's impossible to discuss fantasy without also discussing how it relates to reality.

Elves in D&D have been their own thing for over 40 years so they can be discussed without reference to the real world. We were doing it. Secondly, while you may have a point concerning Williams Syndrome and fairies of popular imagination, D&D elves are very heavily influenced by the first generation of gamers that wanted to meet Galadriel in their D&D campaigns and not so much Titania and Oberon.

As for your other points, I have some points of disagreement but their more nuances than at the fundamentals but I have been through variations of this discussion at least 5 times in the past couple of weeks and in some cases with people that did not have benign intent. So I will decline to engage further on this topic.

Finally, it is helpful to people like me, whose memories are not as good as they used to be, when responding to a post at the beginning of a 50 page + thread to preface the post with something like "saw this on page one …."quote"....


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Personally I dislike the idea because you’ve basically turned elves into changelings from Eberron. Plus, I’ve never seen a problem from Elves or any other race because you have the ultimate power in morphism and gender identity already: Character creation. If you want your elf/human/dwarf/half-orc to identify as female for instance, why not just make them female at character creation?

If you wanted a special story arc where the character goes through a search for gender identity (not unlike what’s going on with the character of Nott in Critical Role currently), I’d rather make that a one-off that is part of the story as a DM, rather than make it a blanket trait that applies to a whole race that has never shown this ability in previous game fiction before, that steps on the shoes of an existing race no less.

I like the concept for Eladrin more than I do for Elves.

I'm already working on a concept for Eladrin society where season expression matters more than gender expression. Many Eladrin choose either a Summer or Winter expression to throw-in with the Summer Court or the Winter Court, with Springs and Autumns on the fence. Eladrin who change season expression are looked upon as unreliable.

Gender expression, though? Who cares?

Male and female elves will default roll on the male height and weight chart unless they indicate they want to use the old chart for some reason.
If you were to take a second look at the height and weight chart on p. 121 of the Player's Handbook, I think you would notice that 5E is way ahead of you on this point.


Morkus from Orkus
If you were to take a second look at the height and weight chart on p. 121 of the Player's Handbook, I think you would notice that 5E is way ahead of you on this point.

You know, I never bothered to read that page. I let people just choose the height and weight of their PCs. Looking at it, though, I saw this.

"You can play a male or female character without gaining any special benefits or hindrances. Think about how your character does or does not conform to the broader culture’s expectations of sex, gender, and sexual behavior. For example, a male drow cleric defies the traditional gender divisions of drow society, which could be a reason for your character to leave that society and come to the surface."

It seems the game already normalizes transgender(and other genders), so it isn't true that the blessing needs to be added in to normalize transgender.


Lord of the Hidden Layer
But why plant all of this down on a discussion of genuinely alien imaginary fairies, we had just started discussing what if androgyny and gender fluidity was a dominant trait in elves and what would the society be like.
That is the nature of a Thread. Superstition reacted on the basis of the first page-ish of posts and said so.

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