Search results for "Caster Semenya"

The unrelenting gaze

CAS decision on Caster Semenya: This is what injustice looks like

…for Sport has issued a press release outlining a majority decision against Caster Semenya and Athletics South Africa in their case with the IAAF. Caster Semenya is a Black South African cisgender woman, born with a variation of sex characteristics, seeking to compete in the sex category she was assigned at birth. She first came to public attention in 2009, criticised by some competitors and media for her appearance and failure to conform to wester…

a pair of sports shoes


…and resource poor countries and regions (Karkazis and Jordan-Young 2018). Caster Semenya lost her legal challenge to the 2018 World Athletics regulations, despite the support of representations by UN Special Rapporteurs on health, torture, and discrimination against women (Puras and others, 2018) and contested evidence put forward by World Athletics in favour of the regulations (Pape and Piekle 2019; Pielke, Tucker and Boye 2019). Moreover, World…

Still image of Caster Semenya from documentary by Maxx Ginnane

Caster Semenya: “Too Fast To Be A Woman?”

…to question. It’s an excellent documentary, with extensive interviews with Caster, her family, representatives of sporting bodies, and others. It’s highly recommended. Sadly, the issues about Caster’s ability to run remain contentious, and the IOC and IAAF have introduced a deeply flawed sex test in preparation for the 2012 Olympics. Take a look at some recent articles on the issue via the OII Australia site, and a wider international set of repor…


London Telegraph: “IAAF offers to pay for Caster Semenya’s gender surgery if she fails verification test”

…rm hermaphrodite, although some intersex people reclaim the term. It’s not generally appropriate (nor scientifically correct) for news media to use a term that many intersex people find demeaning. If the IAAF is so desperately keen to know what Ms Semenya’s gender is, why do they not simply ask her if she is a woman or a man? We find the idea that the IAAF may require Ms Semenya to undergo surgery to remove possible internal testes in order for he…

OII Australia founding president, Gina Wilson

Gina Wilson: “Ms Semenya, I Never Knew You”

…equal footing to him in matters of relativity. Relativity, an interesting concept when intersex versus normal is considered. Ms Semenya, I never knew you and I have little doubt that neither does nearly every person who has speculated on your life. The Caster Semenya that lives in the brains of most is the invention of the individual doing the speculating and if that Caster Semenya is a monster and a freak then that monster resides entirely inside…

Caster Semenya draped in the South African flag

OII Australia congratulates Caster Semenya on her Olympic medal

…We don’t know if Caster Semenya is an intersex woman or not. Despite numerous statements in the local press, we are not aware of any official public disclosure regarding her status. Nevertheless, she has faced salacious enquiry and humiliation as if she is. We salute her strength in the face of adversity, and congratulate her on her Olympic medal for the women’s 800m in London….

London Olympics photo by Farrukh

Reporting on the Olympics

…stralian Olympian Madeleine Pape, writing for SBS on “Why I now stand with Caster Semenya”, August 2016. An article by Michelle Griffin in The Age, “Sex testing in sport: How athlete Madeleine Pape came to champion Caster Semenya”, that quotes Madeleine Pape. In recent days, three clinicians with involvement in IOC policies on sex testing women athletes, have also made a statement against sex testing and indiscriminate public scrutiny, in “The Oly…

quotation by Warren

Patricia Nell Warren: “The IOC and gender inquisition”

…not gone away. Over the last decade, it has gotten bigger and uglier. What Caster Semenya is being put through is a Joan of Arc type inquisition over gender. And now the IOC wants to do it to a lot of other women. The experts insist that they aren’t being “unfair” — that they’re only concerned about “athlete health.” They said that these “disordered” athletes should be allowed to compete…but only if they agree to treatment. In other words, women’s…

Intersex people in sport

We welcome UN Human Rights Council resolution on sport

…edical intervention. The regulations have been suspended pending a case by Caster Semenya before the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The resolution is ground-breaking. It is the first resolution on the rights of (some) intersex persons, in this case women born with variations of sex characteristics, using the medicalised language of the IAAF regulations on women with “differences of sex development” and androgen sensitivity. It also explicitly ref…

OII Australia founding president, Gina Wilson

Gina Wilson: Sexism is the Issue with the IOC

…r the general population beyond what is within normal variability. Mokgadi Caster Semenya did not break the world record. Will they test the world record holder for excess testosterone levels? Generally intersex have a distinct disadvantage because of their physical differences. If Ms Semenya has AIS – Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome – or PAIS – Partial Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome – as is sometimes supposed then her body will react less to tes…

Payoshni Mitra, Dutee Chand and Katrina Karkazis in Lausanne, Switzerland

Dutee can run!

…ement referencing the exclusion of women perceived to be intersex, such as Caster Semenya, but it’s not clear that the organisers, nor the Commonwealth Games Pride House, issued any statement on the matter. Congratulations and thanks to Dutee, for taking the risk of protesting IAAF policy. Thank you also to Katrina Karkazis, Payoshni Mitra and Santhi Soundarajan. You’re all heroes. More information The Court of Arbitration statement and judgement:…

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“Out of Bounds? A Critique of the New Policies on Hyper­androgenism in Elite Female Athletes”

…g, they devised new policies in response to the IAAF’s treatment of Caster Semenya, the South African runner whose sex was challenged because of her spectacular win and powerful physique that fueled an international frenzy questioning her sex and legitimacy to compete as female. These policies claim that atypically high levels of endogenous testosterone in women (caused by various medical conditions) create an unfair advantage and must be regulate…