Autogynephile, also known as Blanchard’s transsexualism typology, is defined as a male’s sexual arousal by the thought of himself being a woman.
It is a paraphilia that is considered transvestic fetish and some form of male-to-female transsexualism.
“Autogynephile” includes cross-dressing and cross-gender expression without women’s clothing.
It also encompasses sexual arousal involving elements of idealization, attachment and erotic desire.
Origin of the term
The term was created by Ray Blanchard throughout the 1980s and 1990s, including his colleague Kurt Freund.
Researches and observations were suggesting that multiple types of transsexualism exists and it dates back to the 20th century. For instance, Magnus Hirschfeld arranged transsexuals into four classes: homosexual, bisexual, heterosexual and automonosexual.
Hirschfeld used the term automonosexual to refer to males who find excitement in the thought of being/looking like a female.
Also, in the beginning of the 1950s, researchers and clinicians proposed that there is a variety of classification of transsexualism.
Spread of the term
In 1982, Kurt Freund and his colleagues, during Blanchard’s research on the topic, argued that there are two different male-to-female transsexuals, with two distinct causes: one type associated with childhood femininity and androphilia (sexual attraction to other men), and the other group associated with fetishism and gynephilia (sexual attraction to women).
In 1989, Blanchard claimed that when he began his series of studies on gender dysphoria, including “autogynephile”, researchers had “identified a homosexual type of gender identity disturbance [which] occurs in homosexuals of both sexes.”
- Wikipedia – Blanchard’s transsexualism typology
- Quilette – What Is Autogynephilia? An Interview with Dr Ray Blanchard