Over time, America came to be called many things: land of the free, or land of opportunity. To Native Americans, their home was already the land of the free, and the arrival of white settlers meant that many of those freedoms were taken from them. Different Native nations had different words for Two Spirit individuals, and not all of them can be easily translated into English. In the Cherokee Nation, for example, the word asegi is a blanket term, with more specific words to describe male-assigned and female-assigned people. Although everyone calls them something different, the concept is similar across many Native American cultures.
Two-Spirit also two spirit or, occasionally, twospirited is a modern, pan-Indian , umbrella term used by some Indigenous North Americans to describe Native people in their communities who fulfill a traditional third-gender or other gender-variant ceremonial and social role in their cultures. Cameron writes, "The term two-spirit is thus an Aboriginal-specific term of resistance to colonization and non-transferable to other cultures. There are several underlying reasons for two spirited Aboriginals' desire to distance themselves from the mainstream queer community. She states, "at the core of contemporary two-spirit identities is ethnicity, an awareness of being Native American as opposed to being white or being a member of any other ethnic group". While the words niizh manidoowag from Ojibwe were also proposed at the same time in this discussion to honor the language of the Peoples in whose territory the conference was being held , this term had not been previously used, in either Ojibwe or English, until this conference in , nor was this term ever intended to replace the traditional terms or concepts already in use in Native ceremonial cultures.
We apologize for any inconvenience. Traditionally, Native American two spirit people were male, female, and sometimes intersexed individuals who combined activities of both men and women with traits unique to their status as two spirit people. In most tribes, they were considered neither men nor women; they occupied a distinct, alternative gender status. In tribes where two spirit males and females were referred to with the same term, this status amounted to a third gender.