philosophy meta-forum

Tuvel Outrageously Given A Further Platform

Pseudo-Dionysius

10 day(s) ago

Philosophy Today has let violent cis Rebecca Tuvel reply to her critics in a symposium on her violent article that compared transracialism to transsexualism. Violence times violence is more violence!

So what further violence has she done? I am too vulnerable to enter the arena of violence and actually read the papers. Will those of you with sufficient privilege to encounter the violence unharmed render a verdict?

Callicles

10 day(s) ago

Babel

Averroes

10 day(s) ago

When I first saw the Philosophy Today thing, I assumed we were in for a new brouhaha, but as far as I can see so far it's crickets, not just within philosophy but also from the non-philosophy social media shit disturbers and online columnists who kicked up a fuss the first time around.

If anyone sees any reaction forming from the aggrieved identitarian camp, I'd be curious to see it.

Syed

10 day(s) ago

Rebecca Tuvel is lovely.

Adi

10 day(s) ago

She pretty much shreds Botts.

Ibn

10 day(s) ago

a new brouhaha

Averroes

Please, a new affaire.

Bernhard

10 day(s) ago

Agreed on Botts. Almost painful to read, even for someone with no sympathy for her position.

Xun

10 day(s) ago

When I first saw the Philosophy Today thing, I assumed we were in for a new brouhaha, but as far as I can see so far it's crickets, not just within philosophy but also from the non- philosophy social media shit disturbers and online columnists who kicked up a fuss the first time around.

If anyone sees any reaction forming from the aggrieved identitarian camp, I'd be curious to see it.

Averroes

https://twitter.com/lastpositivist/status/984768661603999745

Al-Juwayni

9 day(s) ago

The Tuvel affair has been absolutely brilliant for letting me know who to keep my personal and professional distance from. I'll add Liam Bright and everyone who liked his tweet to that list.

Victor

9 day(s) ago

I can never figure how what the current fads are in philosophy anymore. The Tuvel affair seemed pretty important to me...but I couldn't quite understand the reaction of the discipline.

I've read a bit of the pro-"Trans" stuff, and it basically seems of a piece with other stuff on what one might call the philosophical left. A lot of (to my mind not at all plausible) stuff about "social construction" and whatnot. Most philosophers I know are clearly committed to rejecting such arguments, and would almost certainly do so more-or-less out of hand if it weren't politically incorrect and professionally dangerous--if, say, the arguments were offered up in defense of some completely abstract, politically neutral metaphysical claim. And in my experience, in private conversation, if you cajole people into being honest, they'll admit that they don't think that e.g. Jenner is a woman. Tuvel even, as I recall, cites someone defending some version of the pro-"trans" stuff who admits that the straight-up metaphysical arguments don't work--the position can only be supported by political arguments to the effect that, basically, we are politically obligated to say things that aren't true. (Roughly that, anyway.)

So... Can anyone give me a summary of WTF is up in the profession? Does the silent majority in the discipline really think that men can actually become women and vice-versa via some social hocus-pocus? Has the profession suddenly (by my standards of suddenness, anyway) gone all social constructionist / antirealist? Or are they trying to pretend that this is a merely semantic disagreement? And that they ought to go along with it out of something like Rortian solidarity? Or, rather, do most people think this is bullshit but they're afraid to say so? Or are they just not interested? Or do they think it's beneath them to call *bullshit* on it? Or what?

Do people think that the anti-Tuvel hysteria initiated because the paper appeared in Hypatia? Because that seems like *part* of it... But what if someone published a paper in a non-ideological journal arguing that e.g. Jenner is not actually a woman? Wouldn't that person be vilified? Because I'd guess they would. Tuvel's paper was *way* over to the philosophical left...and she was considered literally Hitler. Has anyone published a paper in a professional journal arguing for the (commonsense, realist) view that e.g. Jenner isn't a woman? If not, isn't that really damn weird? I mean...if such obvious arguments aren't being represented in such a debate...wouldn't that be a sign of something like a real sickness in the discipline?

To sustain the conclusion that e.g. Jenner is a woman, you have to accept--or at least this seems obvious to me--a complicated and extremely implausible philosophical apparatus that would, even five or ten years ago, been more-or-less laughed off the table by the average American philosopher.

Can anybody give me some idea what's going on?

Jean

9 day(s) ago

There is very likely a significant biological basis for transgender identity, in addition to whatever social norms add.

http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2016/gender-lines-science-transgender-identity/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/is-there-something-unique-about-the-transgender-brain/

Fazang

9 day(s) ago

There is very likely a significant biological basis for transgender identity, in addition to whatever social norms add.

http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2016/gender-lines-science-transgender-identity/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/is-there-something-unique- about-the-transgender-brain/

Jean

Not really, and not really relevant. Or, more precisely: questions of "transgender identity" aren't really relevant. It doesn't matter much whether some men really do feel like women and some women really do feel like men. I think most of us are willing to acknowledge that that might be true. But that doesn't have anything much to do with whether some men really are women and some women really are men. Brain scans can't help answer those questions.

Needless to say, though, some researchers are stretching hard to find something biological that's in some way relevant. When progressives want something to be true, social science and psychology hop to and immediately try to find it. Money and prestige typically follow progressive political fashions. If and when the political pressure subsides, some good science might appear. But it's likely to be awhile. For one thing, note that many such studies involve Rorschach-y comparisons of brain scans in which researchers already know all the relevant facts about each person's scan. They don't involve *predictions*. If researchers could reliably take children's brain scans and, knowing only the sex of the child each scan came from, predict which child would turn out, later in life, to think he or she is "transgendered"...well that'd be interesting. But the studies I've read about thus far don't come anywhere close to that.

We might get some good science in five or ten years. We'll just have to wait and see.

But none of that is relevant, really. All such research could give us, *at most*, would be evidence that some people really do *feel* as if they're the opposite sex, and an explanation for that. No such studies could show that some men are really women and some women are really men. If Smith is male and has a female-ish brain, then Smith is male.

Olav

9 day(s) ago

Victor: has your mom asked you yet "who's that man?" because of Jordan Peterson poster hanging over your race car bed?

Uddyotakara

9 day(s) ago

Olav:

You might be looking for the Literarytheorymetaforum

Genevieve

9 day(s) ago

There is very likely a significant biological basis for transgender identity, in addition to whatever social norms add.

http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2016/gender-lines-science-transgender-identity/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/is-there-something-unique- about-the-transgender-brain/

Jean

There being a biological basis for tranny insanity doesn't tell us much. There's a biological basis for the fact that I love sugar but this doesn't mean that loving sugar is part of my identity or that it isn't also acquired. Nurture works through nature.

This is entirely consistent with trannyism being a pathology brought about by constant exposure to an unhealthy social reality. Think about it: if you live in America and aren't in the South you are being bombarded by 24/7 messaging that being a man is "toxic", that being a (neurotic and unstable) woman is great, and that being gay is cool and desirable.

Then you wonder why so many headcases now think they're women.

Pasquale

9 day(s) ago

I think you guys mostly have your heads up your asses about what being transgendered is. You talk about it like a dude wakes up one day and decides to be a woman. You really need to read up on the psychology lit before wading into this one.

Pasquale

9 day(s) ago

Transgenderism is an extremely complicated psychological phenomenon that almost certainly has biological underpinnings (there are theories where it is genetic/ neurobiologically mediated, theories where it is a product of trauma) and about which there is a huge literature. Saying that people’s think transgenderism is “a dude decides to become a chick and social magic makes it so” reflects no understanding whatsoever of what the phenomenon is and the psych research on it and if you are inclined to type that sentence you need to flat read more before saying anything. For example, the incredibly high suicide rate of trans individuals is an important insight into how this is not a blithe “I’ll be another gender now” sort of thing.

Richard

9 day(s) ago

I think you guys mostly have your heads up your asses about what being transgendered is. You talk about it like a dude wakes up one day and decides to be a woman. You really need to read up on the psychology lit before wading into this one.

Pasquale

No

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

I think you guys mostly have your heads up your asses about what being transgendered is. You talk about it like a dude wakes up one day and decides to be a woman. You really need to read up on the psychology lit before wading into this one.

Pasquale

No

Richard

I was just repeating almost verbatim the very wrong characterization of the phenomenon above (I.e. a choice followed by a social construction). Are you defending that view or just being obtuse about the fact you have little knowledge of this complex subject?

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

“Needless to say, though, some researchers are stretching hard to find something biological that's in some way relevant. When progressives want something to be true, social science and psychology hop to and immediately try to find it.”

This is also pure bullshit. The John Money/ David Reimer case shows pretty well that gender identity isn’t the product of socialization alone. But that also suggests it is extremely implausible that being trans is purely a product of social forces or straightforwardly a choice. If you don’t know what study I’m talking about you haven’t even taken baby steps toward an informed view about this subject.

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

And before someone mentions it, “Wahh leftists and SJWs are bad” isn’t an excuse not to read the relevant bits of psychology, medicine, and gender studies needed to have an informed view about this subject. If you only read blog posts and philosophy papers you won’t have a chance.

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

“This is entirely consistent with trannyism being a pathology brought about by constant exposure to an unhealthy social reality. Think about it: if you live in America and aren't in the South you are being bombarded by 24/7 messaging that being a man is "toxic", that being a (neurotic and unstable) woman is great, and that being gay is cool and desirable.”

This is the dumbest thing I’ve read in my life. Intense body dysmorphia doesn’t arise from people telling you “masculinity is toxic.” Transgenderism also existed in early recorded history and is not the product of our current sociocultural moment.

Anita

8 day(s) ago

]For example, the incredibly high suicide rate of trans individuals is an important insight into how this is not a blithe “I’ll be another gender now” sort of thing.

Pasquale

Alternative explanation: People who are already suffering (and thus already predisposed to self-destructive behavior) will, for quite understandable reasons, seek explanations of their suffering that also offer a clear-cut remediation program. Some of them find what they're looking for in transgederism...and then the remediation doesn't work.

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

*Dysphoria

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

]For example, the incredibly high suicide rate of trans individuals is an important insight into how this is not a blithe “I’ll be another gender now” sort of thing.

Pasquale

Alternative explanation: People who are already suffering (and thus already predisposed to self-destructive behavior) will, for quite understandable reasons, seek explanations of their suffering that also offer a clear-cut remediation program. Some of them find what they're looking for in transgederism...and then the remediation doesn't work.

Anita

Sure, could be. Anything could be. Is it?

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

Anyway blithely mocking people with a severe mental illness manifesting in delusions as “deciding to become a woman one day” is as reprehensible and wrong headed as mocking people who were born that way.

Marcel

8 day(s) ago

I think you guys mostly have your heads up your asses about what being transgendered is. You talk about it like a dude wakes up one day and decides to be a woman. You really need to read up on the psychology lit before wading into this one.

Pasquale

No

Richard

I was just repeating almost verbatim the very wrong characterization of the phenomenon above (I.e. a choice followed by a social construction). Are you defending that view or just being obtuse about the fact you have little knowledge of this complex subject?

Pasquale

A man cannot be a woman, and a woman cannot be a man. I don't think knowing that makes me obtuse; I think knowing that makes me sane, and it's something so simple and obvious that even a little child can understand.

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

I think you guys mostly have your heads up your asses about what being transgendered is. You talk about it like a dude wakes up one day and decides to be a woman. You really need to read up on the psychology lit before wading into this one.

Pasquale

No

Richard

I was just repeating almost verbatim the very wrong characterization of the phenomenon above (I.e. a choice followed by a social construction). Are you defending that view or just being obtuse about the fact you have little knowledge of this complex subject?

Pasquale

A man cannot be a woman, and a woman cannot be a man. I don't think knowing that makes me obtuse; I think knowing that makes me sane, and it's something so simple and obvious that even a little child can understand.

Marcel

I wasn’t addressing the claim that transgendered individuals *are* the gender they identify with, I was addressing the incredible misconception that, psychologically, transgenderism is people thinking it would be cool to be the other gender. Your proposal is of course obvious, except that the link between gender and biological sex is not as obvious as you make it to be (unless by stipulation)

Pasquale

8 day(s) ago

You can see why I’m pissed off at the tendency of people here to tell bullshit stories that comfort them. The idea of trans people makes them uncomfortable, and they are pissed off at liberals spouting about “toxic masculinity” so they lash the two together in a truthy way (oh transgendered people must be people liberals convinced to switch genders) even though that truthy sounding explanation wilts at the touch of evidence like a slug at the touch of salt.

Theodor

8 day(s) ago

Every behavioural disposition has some sort of biological underpinning. If you have gender atypical preferences or hobbies, for example, your brain will most likely also be atypical (due to genetics or to hormonal factors in the prenatal environment). This doesn't necessarily mean, however, that you are By Nature 'transgender'. Maybe you are homossexual (who are known to have gender atypical preferences/hobbies, even early on [1]) or just a 'cis heterossexual' person who's a bit of an outlier. The problem is that, because of political pressure, every statistical abnormality can only be explained by the person being transgender. That's what everyone on Tumblr will tell you and that's what the doctors *must* tell you.

The result is overdiagnosis. The same happened with bulimia in the 90's [2] and multiple personality disorder in the 80's [3].

[1] Sexual Orientation, Controversy, and Science

:Homosexuals have gender atypical hobbies and careers. This pattern is consistently found cross-culturally.

http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1529100616637616

Childhood Gender-Typed Behavior and Adolescent Sexual Orientation:

A Longitudinal Population- Based Study

Gender atypical behaviour at age 3 'significantly and consistently' predicts sexuality at age 15.

https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/bitstream/handle/1810/262671/Li_et_al-2017-Developmental_Psychology-AM.pdf

[2] https://www.thecut.com/article/how-bulimia-became-a-medical-diagnosis.html

[3] "The first known case of an individual with conduct that would today be considered Multiple Personality Disorder was recorded in the late 18th century (Hacking, 1995). In 1972, there were ten known cases over the previous fifty years despite a widespread interest in psychotherapy over that period. By 1986, it was believed that six thousand cases had been diagnosed.

As cases of multiple personality began to emerge in the 1970s, they attracted the interest not only of therapists and the psychiatric profession, but also of the media. Awareness and discussion of Multiple Personality Disorder became widespread. Multiple Personality Disorder became a kind of mental illness. It became a kind of thing that someone could have. This is what Hacking refers to as “semantic contagion” (p. 238). Before its meaning became prevalent in society, one could not describe oneself as a person of that kind. There were confused individuals who were (either deliberately or pre-reflectively) seeking to dissociate themselves from memories of painful events. These people, however, could not have described themselves as having the Disorder, nor could people in psychology diagnose their patients with this term. Once MPD became a kind of thing, it became a way for individuals to understand themselves and understand people around them."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rewriting_the_Soul

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