• Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    In other words, males not only act like males but are treated as such by others of it's kind.Harry Hindu

    Then the animal kingdom suffers from patriarchal oppression as well! and they also need a feminist movement! ...
  • Ciceronianus the White
    727
    As near as I can tell, which is to say by consultation with a dictionary, "gender" has to do with the state of being male or female, or the perception of being male or female, or perhaps the state or perception of being something else, but according to cultural and social differences and characteristics rather than biological.

    I don't find this definition particularly enlightening. But whatever else "gender" may be, I think it's in any case something that certain lawyers (I'm a lawyer), academics, psychologists, sociologists, pundits and politicians will find a way to exploit for their own benefit as best they can.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966


    I wonder, although there are differences in how gender is expressed from culture to culture, is it ever the case that one culture can't tell the sex of differing cultures because of their different gender representations?
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    I don't find this definition particularly enlightening. But whatever else "gender" may be, I think it's in any case something that certain lawyers (I'm a lawyer), academics, psychologists, sociologists, pundits and politicians will find a way to exploit for their own benefit as best they can.Ciceronianus the White

    interesting, how do you think it can be exploited?
  • Roke
    118

    If you are a biological determinist, or biological essentialist, about sex and gender, for instance, you are likely to judge that someone who doesn't comply with a demand regarding how people of a given sex ought to behave isn't entitled to be considered normal. — Pierre-Normand

    I think this is part of what I wanted to get at.

    If I don't behave normally, I'm not entitled to be considered normal. But it need not be a pejorative thing. I think the healthy thing for a nonconformist to do is to accept that they aren't normal, rather than campaign to redefine normal. My sense is that this is a big part of what's going on.
  • Roke
    118

    Can you elaborate on what gender means to you? Expressions and impressions about what? Is my affinity for pinstripes part of my gender?
  • Ciceronianus the White
    727
    interesting, how do you think it can be exploited?Mr Phil O'Sophy
    As to lawyers, it represents an opportunity. We see it exploited already. Just do a Google search of "gender law." An example, I would think, would be in what I like to call the Lex Lavacrum, the "Law of the Bath(room)", i.e. the disputes arising out of the use and alleged misuse of gender-specific bathrooms. Then, there are the questions arising from disputes as to the rights of transgender or transsexual people (e.g., serving in the military); whether the law should recognize the "third gender" option. Much money to be made by enterprising lawyers--Thar's gold in them thar genders.

    As to academia, gender is and no doubt has been for some time the subject matter of courses historical, psychological, anthropological, sociological. You'll find academic journals devoted to gender, I'm sure. As to pundits and politicians, what do they do but exploit controversial issues? Gender certainly is one of them. Positions on gender will generate popularity, publicity, funding and votes.
  • Roke
    118

    So you don't think sex and gender are synonymous? Is gender is a social construct? — bloodninja
    I think they used to be synonymous but have drifted apart. And I suspect gender is a poorly defined fraught concept now, post-drift. Trying to sort it out.
  • Roke
    118


    I understand where you're coming from. I think the cognitive dissonance stems from an attempt to reconcile multiple narratives about these issues. It's sometimes easy to mistake two separate positions for the same thing due to the overlapping themes. In addition to that, many of these positions seem internally inconsistent. I've been picking up on a certain recurring theme: anti-something positions that sneakily presuppose the something they're attacking.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966


    Yeah exactly what I’ve been noticing. They make attack on X because of principals P & Q...etc, then suggest alternative Y which presupposes and requires P & Q for its conception and establishment, undermining its initial criticism and motivation for suggesting Y in the first place.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    I made some other points related to this is the ‘can you change your gender’ thread.

    If being cis gendered is an independent experience of being trans gendered and vice verse, that means they are not equivalent (otherwise there is no distinction). So the trans cannot say they are having a cis experience of the opposite sex as that breaks the law of none contradiction. Trans gendered is defined as not being cis gendered and so cannot claim an equivalent experience.

    Also, if a trans can apparently rightfully claim that the cis cannot understand the experience of trans as they haven’t experienced their predicament, then the cis can make the same claim in reverse due to the same reason (because they also move forward on the assumption they were born the way they are). Therefore the trans claim is wholly inconsistent, as the trans experience is completely independent, defined in contrast to the binary cis genders, yet relies on the inconsistent claim that it is experiencing the unexperienced experience of the opposite it claims to be.

    The only reason I can seem to figure out why we accept it as a claim, is because of the high suicide rates and the rates of depression related to it. But I don’t think it’s clear that overlooking the chaotic nature of the position they are adopting under the demand for compassion will resolve the problem. I think it may make it worse.
  • bloodninja
    268
    perhaps the difference between sex and gender is the same as the difference between ethnicity and race? In any case, it seems to me obvious that gender is how one's biological sex is taken up and acted out (roles) within society. Gender is largely determined through the social possibilities available to one's biological sex and you don't have to be a genius to see that these possibilities are changing all the time.
  • andrewk
    1.5k
    physiology normally defines one's behaviorHarry Hindu
    Whether that's the case is the big question that is nowhere near answered - to what extent human sexual stereotypical behaviour is based on genes vs how they were raised. We can't learn much from other animals because those that are social enough to have a culture will have the same dilemma. We can learn from observing sexual differentiation of behaviour in non-social animals, but it's hard to draw any inferences from that to humans, since non-social animals are much more different from humans than the social ones (eg all the great apes are social (actually, I'm not sure about orang-utans. Are they social?)).

    But even if it were to be conclusively demonstrated that genes make boys enjoy playing rugby more than girls, I would like to live in a world where girls are allowed to play rugby, and are not looked down on, or regarded as 'not a proper girl' for doing so.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966

    I’d be interested to know what’s been changing specifically? What particular characteristics have varied so much so as to completely disregard gender roles?
  • Pierre-Normand
    1.3k
    I think this is part of what I wanted to get at.

    If I don't behave normally, I'm not entitled to be considered normal. But it need not be a pejorative thing. I think the healthy thing for a nonconformist to do is to accept that they aren't normal, rather than campaign to redefine normal. My sense is that this is a big part of what's going on.
    Roke

    The trouble is that people don't usually go around qualifying other people's behaviors as "normal" or "abnormal" in a totally dispassionate and/or merely descriptive or statistical way. If this were the case, we could say of an American citizen who speaks both Chinese and Russian that she is highly abnormal.

    Also, if someone is gay or transgender, say, and demands not be treated as an abnormal person, it would be very disingenuous to interpret her as saying, foolishly, that her specific case represents a statistical norm: that a large majority of women are gay, or that a large majority of people born with XY chromosomes are females, and hence that she is normal in that sense. Rather, what she is saying is: to hell with norms. Merely statistical of biological norms aren't normative in any kind of moral sense.
  • Moliere
    1.4k
    Can you elaborate on what gender means to you? Expressions and impressions about what? Is my affinity for pinstripes part of my gender?Roke

    "Gender" means reference to an aspect of identity. Identity is both expressed and impressed upon us -- it is expressed socially and expressed to ourselves. It is impressed socially and also impressed by our self. So when a person expresses masculine traits to the world they are expressing an aspect of their gender which is an aspect of their identity. But they can also express these traits to themselves: reflecting upon how, as a man, they feel that....

    And we are also impressed by others as well as ourselves. We are impressed, as men, to... ; we are impressed by our self to act as...

    I think identity has this two by two aspect where it is expressed and impressed, and that expression is to others/self, where impressions is from others/self.

    As to whether your affinity for pinstripes is part of your gender, I'd ask -- how do you feel about it?
  • bloodninja
    268
    What particular characteristics have varied so much so as to completely disregard gender roles?Mr Phil O'Sophy

    Gender roles aren't disregarded, gender roles change as society changes and our shared understanding of being changes. An interesting Marxist take on our changing gender roles would locate the main source of this 'ideological' change in the ever 'evolving' technological infrastructure.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    But how did they change before the feminist movement began? What I mean is: What was changing, not why it changed. Were women not prodominantly care givers around the world for most of history? Even as those roles changed (although I haven’t been given any examples of what changed) has there not always been the two separate spheres of being in each culture and time? - disregarding the modern time where this distinction is being dissolved.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966

    Sorry I keep forgetting to click reply to people. Above messages for you bloodninja :)
  • bloodninja
    268
    has there not always been the two separate spheres of being in each culture and time?Mr Phil O'Sophy

    Sorry I don't really understand this. By being do you mean gender?
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966

    Male and female. Regardless of society and culture mostly throughout history was there not always a distinction in the roles of the two sexes. And could people from other cultures not tell which was which?
  • bloodninja
    268
    I would have to agree. I still maintain that our shared understanding of gender changes with our shared understanding of being however.
  • andrewk
    1.5k
    Regardless of society and culture mostly throughout history was there not always a distinction in the roles of the two sexesMr Phil O'Sophy
    Was there? I would be surprised if there were not some cultures in which men and women performed the same roles in everything except those things that only one was equipped to do by virtue of their sex, eg breast-feeding.

    We'd need to ask some anthropologists.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966


    Yeah I’m sure there will be exceptions to the case just as I’m sure there are exceptions to all cases.
  • Pseudonym
    1.2k
    We'd need to ask some anthropologists.andrewk

    No, we just furiously type whatever we 'reckon' don't we?
  • Bitter Crank
    6.3k
    Were women not prodominantly care givers around the world for most of history?Mr Phil O'Sophy

    Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years: Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times by Elizabeth Barber makes the case that women mastered the art and technology of fabric production because it was compatible with another task, child care. Fabric production, from raw material to finished cloth, could be done while caring for children without exposing them to unnecessary harm. Stone cutting, wood cutting, metal-making, plowing, herding, digging, hunting... -- all men's work -- was too risky for children to be close at hand.

    The book is interesting for its treatment of both the social aspects and the fabric produced. Women in ancient Egypt could (did) produce linen cloth with 200+ threads per square inch which is about what ordinary sheets are today.

    On the other hand, I am pretty sure there were lots of women doing agricultural work in the ancient world -- not because work roles were reversed, but because it was an 'all hands into the rice paddies and fields' necessity. That's still true today in places.

    One also has to bear in mind that all work--domestic, raw materials production, and agriculture--was very hard work up until recently. Making bread? Women had to grind grain into coarse flour by hand, using heavy stones. Or they pounded raw material into usable mash.

    The difference between women's and men's work was how much movement was involved, and risk. Taking an infant to the stone quarry, metal-making site, the forest (woodcutting), following herds, etc. is obviously not a good idea. Women's work tended to be more localized in the house or village. This localization allowed for safe work and child care in the same place.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years: Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times by Elizabeth BarberBitter Crank

    Interesting, I'll give this a read sometime soon if God wills, it sounds like a good book

    .
    One also has to bear in mind that all work--domestic, raw materials production, and agriculture--was very hard work up until recently.Bitter Crank

    Yeah I certainly do not doubt that. Technology has certainly eased the load for all lucky enough to be within its reach.

    The difference between women's and men's work was how much movement was involved, and risk. Taking an infant to the stone quarry, metal-making site, the forest (woodcutting), following herds, etc. is obviously not a good idea. Women's work tended to be more localized in the house or village. This localization allowed for safe work and child care in the same place.Bitter Crank

    Thats pretty much the reasoning I follow with regards to why there would have been separate spheres of being. I think it was more out of necessity than wilful oppression of one half over the over. I also believe it was more of a cooperative relationship between men and women, rather than the cut-throat one people are painting as of late. Life was hard for everyone, they had to go with what was simple, effective, and at hand, without overcomplicating the system with bizarre, complex, inconsistent philosophies. Work needed to be done, and children kept out of harms way as much as possible.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    No, we just furiously type whatever we 'reckon' don't we?Pseudonym

    You 'reckon' yeah? lol.
  • Mr Phil O'Sophy
    966
    Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years: Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times by Elizabeth BarberBitter Crank

    I've purchased the book. Will give it a read asap (when not rammed with Uni work). Seems interesting.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.3k
    Whether that's the case is the big question that is nowhere near answered - to what extent human sexual stereotypical behaviour is based on genes vs how they were raised. We can't learn much from other animals because those that are social enough to have a culture will have the same dilemma. We can learn from observing sexual differentiation of behaviour in non-social animals, but it's hard to draw any inferences from that to humans, since non-social animals are much more different from humans than the social ones (eg all the great apes are social (actually, I'm not sure about orang-utans. Are they social?)).andrewk
    Just think of the things that women can do that men can't and vice versa simply based on their anatomy. Many species have sexual dimorphisms where the size and shape of the bodies can vary between sexes and each one has their own possible behaviors bases on their design. It's obvious you don't know enough about biology and psychology by the claims you are making.

    But even if it were to be conclusively demonstrated that genes make boys enjoy playing rugby more than girls, I would like to live in a world where girls are allowed to play rugby, and are not looked down on, or regarded as 'not a proper girl' for doing so.andrewk
    I never said that girls can't play rugby. The problem comes when a man thinks he is a woman and wants to play with the women. The problem is the result of the physical differences between men and women.
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