Iceland Airwaves Cultural Interview: Gender Neutrality (LISTEN)

We’re headed cover Iceland Airwaves Music Festival and other cultural stories beginning Sunday, 10/30! Follow along on our adventures via our Iceland Airwaves 2016 daily blog and hear an Icelandic cultural preview interview below.

From elementary schools to bars, and even to children’s books, gender-neutrality is everywhere in Iceland. The Icelandic language even has a non-binary pronoun for people that don’t identify as either male or female, Það. Like in Iceland, bathrooms in New York City are going to be seeing a change this coming year, as they are removing all binary-gender signs from single stall bathrooms. This is similar to what two Chicago college campuses, Columbia College, and the University of Illinois at Chicago, have already done. The United States and Iceland are two countries that are very progressive where gender-neutrality is concerned. Solveig Johnsen, who runs the Icelandic bar Gaukurinn, shares what motivated her to remove the binary gender signs in her bar. Also, author Ósk Ólafsdóttir talks about the decision to change the main character in her children’s book, “The Shopping Trip,” to be gender-neutral.

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