Last modified on 21 June 2014, at 21:27




From Burmese အခြောက် (a.hkrauk, dry article), from (a., noun-forming prefix) + ခြောက် (hkrauk, dry).


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acault (plural acaults)

  1. A male who exhibits transgender behavior. This cultural identification is associated with animistic beliefs.

Usage notesEdit

This word is a mistranslation of the Burmese term အခြောက် (a.hkrauk, dry article) which designates men who seek other men ("homosexual" or MSM). While Coleman et al. did publish a 1992 essay (which was reprinted and referenced by various other authors) referring to the Burmese "acault," they also admitted to an "inability to speak the local languages" (314) and a "lack of training in anthropology" (320). The term ăchauk is Burmese slang and does not literally indicate someone who works as a spirit medium, which is more properly known as နတ်ကတော် (natka.tau). In Burma, these spirit mediums may be female or male, and may or may not be transgendered (cross-dressing), although they do wear costumes during ceremonial rituals when channeling spirits called "nats" in Burma. Homosexuality is not necessarily implied with spirit mediumship.

See alsoEdit

  • berdache and the controversy/discussion about using "berdache" vs. "two spirit" in "Various Kinds of Two-Spirit People: Gender Variance and Homosexuality in Native American communities" by Sabine Lang in Two Spirit People: Native Amreican Gender Identity, Sexuality, and Spirituality. Eds. Sue-Ellen Jacobs, Wesley Thomas, and Sabine Lang. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1997: 100-118
  • Thai กะเทย (kàthoey)
  • Burmese နတ်ကတော် (natka.tau).