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Thread: gender neutral debate

  1. #1
    confidentially pleased cacian's Avatar
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    Lightbulb gender neutral debate

    is it inclusion to deny what gender one is?
    please discuss
    it may never try
    but when it does it sigh
    it is just that
    good
    it fly

  2. #2
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    What do you mean?

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    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
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    I wonder if there is some gender neutral debate going on in Europe at the moment? Perhaps transgender people don't like being labeled as either male or female?
    Le cœur a ses raisons, que la raison ne connaît point. --Pascal

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    From what I understand transgender people just want to be called either man or woman - but some people insist on calling them the opposite. Then there are some people who identify as gender neutral and don't like either.

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    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Volya View Post
    From what I understand transgender people just want to be called either man or woman - but some people insist on calling them the opposite. Then there are some people who identify as gender neutral and don't like either.
    Essentially, yes.

    Historically trans activists have worked in a two gender/two sex mindset. There is still a large segment of the trans community that holds on strongly to the idea of there being strictly two genders and that they argue that they have gender dysmorphia which requires a medical solution, i.e. sex change and hormone therapy. Classic trans activism was more about rights to medical treatment and legal standing (still relevant today where trans people are usually not covered by insurance and in the USA it can cost a small fortune for a person to transition for the good of their mental health). The rise of gender studies and queer theory in the 90s has lead to an upper middle-class sort of trans activism that views gender as an entirely social construct where the primary struggle is rather for breaking down social acceptance of rigid gender barriers. This has lead to new concepts like "genderqueer" where someone identifies as neither male or female. The latter group tends to sometimes push rather silly ideas but there are some strengths to their views as well. I generally agree with them that someone doesn't need to have a sex change per se to be recognized as genuinely trans.

    Personally, I think it's basic human decency to just call someone by whatever they identify with. Although, I sometimes find certain sectors of trans activism exasperating.
    Last edited by OrphanPip; 05-20-2017 at 11:18 PM.
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    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
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    I think the social construction of gender concept goes back at least to the 1960's which is when I first heard about it unless my memory is confused. It predates brain scan technology.
    Le cœur a ses raisons, que la raison ne connaît point. --Pascal

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    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YesNo View Post
    I think the social construction of gender concept goes back at least to the 1960's which is when I first heard about it unless my memory is confused. It predates brain scan technology.
    Of course elements of social construction of gender are old ideas, and it is pretty evident that some aspects of gender are definitely the result of cultural influences. You can take the simple example of trousers, which have made the transition from a masculine form of clothing to a gender neutral one. Now a woman wearing trousers isn't at risk of having her femininity called into question.

    However, the idea of social construction of gender as an articulated philosophical position has developed largely since the 80s-90s and become dominant in the current debate about trans issues in academia within the last 10 or so years. This is when groups like gay and lesbian student societies became "Queer" groups or "LGBTQII" etc.
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
    - Margaret Atwood

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    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
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    I can see how gender uses of trousers could be studied by a kind of "social construction of gender", but how does this more recent version of that idea view brain scans showing differences between males and females as well as between heterosexuals and homosexuals? I am thinking of a research survey by Brian Alexander and Larry Young, "The Chemistry Between Us".
    Le cœur a ses raisons, que la raison ne connaît point. --Pascal

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    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YesNo View Post
    I can see how gender uses of trousers could be studied by a kind of "social construction of gender", but how does this more recent version of that idea view brain scans showing differences between males and females as well as between heterosexuals and homosexuals? I am thinking of a research survey by Brian Alexander and Larry Young, "The Chemistry Between Us".
    The physical differences in the brains would be considered elements of biological sex rather than of gender. Gender is the way in which we as a society regulate and determine behavior in relation to sex. Some have taken the idea of neurological differences to argue that someone can be mentally sexed as a female while having male genitalia. This would be the traditional position the trans community has taken in the past, arguing that being transexual is a medical condition that deserves fair treatment and compassion.

    Newer concepts of trans identity might instead argue that these scientific examinations are more just a tool of the established hegemony to regulate definition of gender as intertwined irrevocably from sex. Although, such brain scans I think do little to elucidate much about trans debates. I think most would agree our sex influences our brains, in terms of development and of hormone levels. There's no need to address them from a constructionist viewpoint because they define gender as wholly a semantic concept that can be separated from biological sex.
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
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    confidentially pleased cacian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Volya View Post
    What do you mean?
    what I mean is
    is it a good idea to say i wont reveal my gender because one feel they are born in the wrong body?

    Quote Originally Posted by Volya View Post
    From what I understand transgender people just want to be called either man or woman - but some people insist on calling them the opposite. Then there are some people who identify as gender neutral and don't like either.
    of course but one cannot predict what tendency what one would feel or be.
    is it a good idea to deny their gender of birth is my question.
    it may never try
    but when it does it sigh
    it is just that
    good
    it fly

  11. #11
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    I think often transgender people don´t know at the start that they are transgender. This is a theme of a current Brazilian soap opera. The girl was born to a mother who transformed her in the fashion child of the mode magazines. But as she grows up the girl more and more rejects the feminine aspects of her identity. She starts to wear her brother´s clothes and to disguise her breasts. As a counterpoint there is a male character too, who has already discovered "the woman inside himself".
    Hiding or not transgender identity depends on a lot of circunstances I think.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  12. #12
    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrphanPip View Post
    The physical differences in the brains would be considered elements of biological sex rather than of gender. Gender is the way in which we as a society regulate and determine behavior in relation to sex. Some have taken the idea of neurological differences to argue that someone can be mentally sexed as a female while having male genitalia. This would be the traditional position the trans community has taken in the past, arguing that being transexual is a medical condition that deserves fair treatment and compassion.

    Newer concepts of trans identity might instead argue that these scientific examinations are more just a tool of the established hegemony to regulate definition of gender as intertwined irrevocably from sex. Although, such brain scans I think do little to elucidate much about trans debates. I think most would agree our sex influences our brains, in terms of development and of hormone levels. There's no need to address them from a constructionist viewpoint because they define gender as wholly a semantic concept that can be separated from biological sex.
    It depends on what those elements of biological sex are. For example, given those brain scans do these academics still use the term "homophobia"? As another example, given those brain scans, do these academics still use the term "patriarchy"?

    Is there really an "established hegemony to regulate definition of gender"? I am a heterosexual male. Am I part of that hegemony?
    Le cœur a ses raisons, que la raison ne connaît point. --Pascal

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    Quote Originally Posted by cacian View Post
    what I mean is
    is it a good idea to say i wont reveal my gender because one feel they are born in the wrong body?
    I think if someone wants to be referred to as 'she' and 'her' even if she was born as a penis, then we should. Regardless of whether it's true or not it doesn't hurt anyone. I personally think gender shouldn't be thought of as categories like man or woman, it should just be how masculine or feminine you are. Your biological sex is a different matter entirely.

  14. #14
    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YesNo View Post
    It depends on what those elements of biological sex are. For example, given those brain scans do these academics still use the term "homophobia"? As another example, given those brain scans, do these academics still use the term "patriarchy"?
    I'm not sure I follow. What relation does the term homophobia have with brain scan differences between men/women/straight/gay people. Homophobia is a social behaviour, it's expressed antagonism towards same-sex attracted people. Likewise, I'm not sure how these scans would effect the concept of a patriarchy.

    Quote Originally Posted by YesNo View Post
    Is there really an "established hegemony to regulate definition of gender"? I am a heterosexual male. Am I part of that hegemony?
    That's simply one way of theorising it. Of course gender is probably one of the most strictly regulated aspects of social behaviour. If you act outside of the normal expectations of your gender you will quickly encounter resistance in terms of slurs, derogatory comments, discrimination, and potentially violence depending on where you are. Putting aside the critical theory, being a heterosexual male means simply not having to face those barriers and resistance in life. Additionally, it means you readily see representations of yourself as normal and accepted in media. We don't need to think of there being some large social force overseeing these sorts of injustices to appreciate that the experience of living as a heterosexual male precludes one from a lot of the pressures that trans or queer people in general have to face daily.

    One common problem trans and other left-wing activists often face in getting their points across is they have habits of talking past people. They adopt the language of theory and apply it to regular people without contextualizing it properly. It's of course unfair to categorize every white male heterosexual as some sort of monstrous supporter of an oppressive regime. The vast majority of heterosexual males spend most of their time just getting on with their lives, it also doesn't mean they don't face any hardship because they are part of a privileged group. You can be part of a privileged group (like white males) while still having legitimate struggles (poverty, disability, sexuality etc.).
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
    - Margaret Atwood

  15. #15
    Pièce de Résistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrphanPip View Post
    That's simply one way of theorising it. Of course gender is probably one of the most strictly regulated aspects of social behaviour. If you act outside of the normal expectations of your gender you will quickly encounter resistance in terms of slurs, derogatory comments, discrimination, and potentially violence depending on where you are. Putting aside the critical theory, being a heterosexual male means simply not having to face those barriers and resistance in life. Additionally, it means you readily see representations of yourself as normal and accepted in media. We don't need to think of there being some large social force overseeing these sorts of injustices to appreciate that the experience of living as a heterosexual male precludes one from a lot of the pressures that trans or queer people in general have to face daily.
    I think one of the reasons the gender issues get such strong reaction is its closeness to issues around sexual behaviour. For most, it is not simply that transgender people dress/behave in ways associated with the "other" but also that behaviour includes sexual aspects as well, which is, in my view, is a matter of personal choice/desire/need.

    I remember reading about an American mom posing with a rifle for a paper; apparently, that is how she would take her daughters to the public toilets if the transgender people were allowed into public toilets. What I find most upsetting and illogical is this very notion that transgender behaviour should be equated with moral "indecency"; that they are more likely to assault others than heterosexual people.

    Re. heterosexual males... True that as a non-minority group, they do not face discrimination as a rule. There is also tendency almost to celebrate their "masculine" qualities in the society, striving to perpetuate them in future generations. This also results in heterosexual males wanting to oppose "others" because that is a threat to their established status in the society.
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