Is Gender Social or Biological: A Poll - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Is Gender Informed By Biological Sex?

1. A Person's Gender Is Entirely Informed By Their Biological Sex.
21
39%
2. A Person's Gender Is Primarily Informed By Their Biological Sex.
15
28%
3. A Person's Gender Is Half Determined By Biology and Half Determined By Society.
7
13%
4. A Person's Gender is Primarily Determined By Society.
7
13%
5. A Person's Gender is Entirely Informed By Their Society.
4
7%
#14850004
@Saeko,

Ah, pleased to meet you. I am actually defending fascism on another thread right now because it was being maligned unfairly, and you were mentioned as its only proponent on PoFo (which is untrue). I'm actually an Imperialist and former Fascist, but the views are so close I felt the need to defend the position as you were not present to defend it. So....Greetings.

I am what you might call a "Hard Traditionalist" and strictly Patriarchal, but for that reason I actually disagree with your answer to the poll, but since we likely agree on the ideal society on most points, I doubt such a disagreement really matters.

Cheers. Thanks for Voting.
#14850037
This might produce some interesting discussion, but I must say that I don’t really care enough to vote. I’m a dude that likes girls that like to be girls and are looking for dudes.

If you don’t fit into that, let your freak flag fly. No skin off my nose one way or another.

And I in no way see why my feelings about that, or anything else, should mean a damned thing.
#14850052
This seems like a weird thing for a poll.

Whether or not gender identity (or gender roles) is biological should be determinable through empirical study. If it is biological, there will be physical evidence for this claim. If there is no such evidence, the number of people who believe otherwise is immaterial.

We still do not even have a defintion of what the OP means by "gender".
#14850067
For clarification.......

Sex is a biological term related to chromosomes, brain chemistry, "the plumbing," hormone production, etc.

Gender is a social term, referring how men and women "act" in regards to roles and self-identification.

The relation of the two is the subject of debate. Is gender performative? That is, are the roles that men and women partake of determined by "performing" a social function. For example, women taking upon themselves the burden to bear children, care for children (what that entails being determined by the society), wear dresses, wear pink, submit to male authority, etc. Are these socially determined or determined by some internal necessity in their biology?

On this question I tend to think the extremes are the least tenable. Despite being a Traditionalist (with a capital "T") who favors the sterotype of women being barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen., I actually agree with cultural marxists on the idea that gender is performative primarily, as there is no logical necessity in the correlation of physical attribution and role assignment/identity in a society. This is not to say that I agree with the starting premise of cultural marxists that this makes gender identity and roles, at base, historically and culturally relative, but I do agree that "biology" or internal necessity only has a limited or, what might be called analogously, an "epigenetic" role.
#14850069
Pants-of-dog wrote:Do you mean gender roles or gender identity?


These two are, if fact, related.

Pants-of-dog wrote:Whether or not gender identity (or gender roles) is biological should be determinable through empirical study. If it is biological, there will be physical evidence for this claim. If there is no such evidence, the number of people who believe otherwise is immaterial.

We still do not even have a definition of what the OP means by "gender".


That is cute, it assumes that a standard or criteria by which validation is made is purely empirical. Cultural-Marxists like Judith Butler, that more-or-less pioneered our current understanding of gender v. sex, argued based on the dialectic of history interpreted through cultural deconstruction NOT empirical analysis (in the scientific sense). That is, human sexuality at the biological level via empirical analysis, cannot trump thousands of years of historically recorded physiognomic morphology; wherein, the forms of gender expression changed from epoch-to-epoch.
#14850070
While I'm more on the "it's social" side this whole thing kind of rings on the nature vs nurture debate on homosexuality which is ultimately all just naturalism fallacy.

It doesn't make any moral difference if gender is social biological or a mix. At least in so far in discussing the morality of those roles or how society should approach the issue.
#14850075
Human nature is biosocial in that we maintain the same biological underpinnings as we did in the past but their expression takes a historically contingent form.
The form of satisfying one's thirst is different for people in different societies. Does one do so from the stream, from a gutter or from the rim of a glass? As such, our biological needs are mediated socially because as society becomes more complex, our labour and division of labour takes on new forms as we have new needs, such as money.
When it comes to gender there is a sense in which it is social in that the essence of men and women's behaviour isn't something purely presumed within in them but within their relations.
But it s a philosophical mistake which abstracts a thing from it's real world relations and then posits its behaviour purely within it. And this is where the division of labour and segregation gives rise to an assumed inner essence based on the observable different behaviour
And I find gender identity stuff reactionary in those that don't wish to presuppose the elimination of the distinctions concretely in seeing the gap between the ideal of a woman's sex being irrelevant to her perceived capacities in some context. As it seeks to maintain the identity and not integrate one into society to make the distinction irrelevant and with less meaning.

http://unityandstruggle.org/2013/09/12/i-am-a-woman-and-a-human-a-marxist-feminist-critique-of-intersectionality-theory/
For several pages, Fanon argues that black people must embrace blackness, and struggle on the basis of being black, in order to negate white supremacists social relations. But to stop there reproduces our one-sided existence and the forms of appearance of capitalism. Identity politics argues, “I am a black man,” or “I am a woman,” without filling out the other side of the contradiction “…and I am a human.” If the starting and ending point is one-sided, there is no possibility for abolishing racialized and gendered social relations. For supporters of identity politics (despite claiming otherwise), womanhood, a form of appearance within society, is reduced to a natural, static “identity.” Social relations such as “womanhood,” or simply gender, become static objects, or “institutions.” Society is therefore organized into individuals, or sociological groups with natural characteristics. Therefore, the only possibility for struggle under identity politics is based on equal distribution or individualism (I will discuss this further below). This is a bourgeois ideology in that it replicates the alienated individual invented and defended by bourgeois theorists and scientists (and materially enforced) since capitalism’s birth.


So I guess in this sense, the idea is that the social is significant in that it's based in the real existing conditions of a person which then shapes their behaviour significantly and the content of their consciousness.
But this doesn't diminish their biological needs.
This probably sits strongly against a perceived sense of limitations of gender roles being something permanent within the sexes and instead sees that those roles are but a division of labour identified with one's sex that as we can see in developed nations has broken down in types of labor.
Thus making an overlap between an idea of masculine and feminine that really moves from a difference in which men and women conceptualized are difference but they're not a true opposition such as human and non-human. A category which they both fall under and really are, but a universal humanity hasn't been made a reality.
So I guess that I say gender roles and the then abstract associations that then get presumed as an inner biologically determined essence by abstracting a person from their real world influences/conditions are just that, based in the conditions of life.
Spoiler: show
http://69.195.124.91/~brucieba/2014/04/13/ilyenkovs-dialectic-of-the-abstract-and-the-concrete-i/
It is a mistake to conceive thought as a separate entity from empirically presented facts in this view and it is the specific task of logic to move from the abstract contemplation of notions or concepts of the empirically presented facts to work out an abstraction that would express the essence of the presented facts given in our notions and concepts. The problem is in drawing out the generalised expression of the real nature of the object under investigation from the empirically obvious facts. This is far from straight forward and constitutes the real challenge in dialectical logic.

For Hegel the essence or content of objects of investigation cannot be known by examining them in isolation. The thing cannot be known in itself as its essence exists outside of itself and in relation to, or in its connectedness with, other objects or phenomena. As Ilyenkov explains:

“That is why a concept, according to Hegel, does not exist as a separate word, term, or symbol. It exists only in the process of unfolding in a proposition, in a syllogism expressing connectedness of separate definitions, and ultimately only in a system of propositions and syllogisms, only in an integral, well-developed theory. If a concept is pulled out of this connection, what remains of it is mere verbal integument, a linguistic symbol. The content of the concept, its meaning, remains outside it-in series of other definitions, for a word taken separately is only capable of designating an object, naming it, it is only capable of serving as a sign, symbol, marker, or symptom.”

https://kapitalism101.wordpress.com/2011/08/18/bukharin-on-the-subjectiveobjective-value-debate/
Because modern bourgeois theory traces a path of causality from the isolated individual to the social it finds all of the categories of modern capitalist society present in the individual. This is an abstract individual with no specific social context. Bohm-Bawerk’s examples are a man sitting by a stream of water, a traveler in the desert, a colonist alone in the primeval forest, etc. In order to deduce the laws of capital from such an absurdist starting point the laws of capital must already exist in the mentality and actions of these individuals. Thus any choice our desert traveler makes is a utility maximization which produces a subjective profit!

Bukharin rightly points out the absurdity of such a starting point since the isolated individual is the not a historical precursor to society and hence, any theoretical abstraction of the isolated individual will naturally just read modern categories into his/her mentality. In reality individual choices and actions always are conditioned by pre-existing conditions.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch01a.htm
The premises from which we begin are not arbitrary ones, not dogmas, but real premises from which abstraction can only be made in the imagination. They are the real individuals, their activity and the material conditions under which they live, both those which they find already existing and those produced by their activity. These premises can thus be verified in a purely empirical way.

https://etd.lib.metu.edu.tr/upload/12613281/index.pdf
Even in the German Ideology, Marx explicitly points out that “circumstances make men just as much as men make circumstance” (GI. 165), and this sentence obviously shows that the real concrete’s relation to law, morality, religion, consciousness etc. is not one-sidedly determined. Of course, intellectual wealth directly depends on material conditions (GI. 154, 163, 166, and 172), but human beings affect and even change the material conditions and the circumstances in so far as it is possible for them to do so within the boundaries of the restrictions set by these conditions. Material conditions and intellectual wealth affect each other: “The production of ideas, of conceptions, of consciousness; is at firstly directly interwoven with the material activity and the material intercourse of men” (GI. 154 italics mine)


Which says that the nature of being a woman isn't that significantly different than that of a man when conditions between them are made quite similar.
There is no masculine or feminine essence.

Spoiler: show
p. 9
C
onsider another example showing how beliefs about sex differences cloud people's analytical vision. How often have we heard question like: will women who enter high-status jobs or political positions end up looking like men or will the result of their entry be a change in the way business and politics is conducted? Implicit in this question are a set of strong assumptions: men have essential personality characteristics and cultural orientations that have shaped the terrain of high status jobs and women have different essential personality characteristics and cultural orientations. The conclusion is that and women's entry into these positions unleashes a conflict between their feminine essence and the dominant masculine essence that has shaped the positions. Either the positions must change to adapt to women's distinctive characteristics or the women must become masculine. (It is perhaps telling that those who raise this issue usually seem concerned only with women entering high-status positions; it is unclear if women becoming factory workers are believed immune or unimportant.) The analytical flaw here i assuming that masculinity has shaped the character of jobs rather than that jobs have shaped masculinity. In her well-known book Men and Women of the Corporation, Rosabeth Kanter argued persuasively that the personality characteristics associated with male and female corporate employees really reflected the contours of their positions. The implication is simple and straightforward. Women who enter high-status positions will look about the same as men in those positions not because they are becoming masculine, but because they're adapting to the demands and opportunities of the position, just like men.

p. 42
Many authors have suggested that feminine personality characteristics (including a lack of drive) explain women's lack of success in climbing corporate ladders. Kantor has persuasively argued that these characteristics are really a direct result of structural conditions. Men placed in positions with no opportunities for advancement and with no effective power show the same personality and behavior characteristics as women in such positions. In the past, however, all women were condemned to occupy the positions without futures. Only men could realistically aspire to rise. Therefore we have good evidence that inequality produces differential motives to dominate weighed against no evidence of any inherent sexual difference in such motives.
#14850077
Victoribus Spolia wrote:These two are, if fact, related.


They sure are. Now, which one are you talking about?

That is cute, it assumes that a standard or criteria by which validation is made is purely empirical.


When it comes to biological science, that is how scientific methodology works.

Cultural-Marxists like Judith Butler, that more-or-less pioneered our current understanding of gender v. sex, argued based on the dialectic of history interpreted through cultural deconstruction NOT empirical analysis (in the scientific sense). That is, human sexuality at the biological level via empirical analysis, cannot trump thousands of years of historically recorded physiognomic morphology; wherein, the forms of gender expression changed from epoch-to-epoch.


That's possible, but does not change the fact that younhave yet to define if you are discussing gender roles or gender identity.
#14850089
Pants-of-dog wrote:That's possible, but does not change the fact that younhave yet to define if you are discussing gender roles or gender identity.


How one self-identifies and what roles such an identity participates in, are both subsets to the concept of gender. Its like asking someone who uses the term "vertabrate" as a point of contrast to "Invertabrate" whether or not they are speaking of mammals or reptiles.
#14850099
@Wellsy,

I guess the biological-determinitive position would object that such "biological differentials" labeled as "the essence" of masculinity and feminity are not in fact extrapolated from an observation of social performativity, which seems to be your argument.

They would likely examine "common" characteristics of the historically manifested phenomena of social-performativity and correlate that to a reasonable and inferrable expression of biological sex in the social sphere.

For example (assuming the position that biological sex in some way determines gender). We see that the majority of tribes and civilizations, for the majority of the time, were patriarchal in their structure; wherein, males took the primary role as protector, leader, and provider; wherein, the women took the primary role of producing and caring for children in deference to the male position. Then, if we examine biological factors: males have better analytical capabilities, increased perceptual awareness, and greater muscle mass, heart size, and lung capacity, as well as increased aggression (from Testosterone) and such physical characteristics, can be observed in non-humans. Women, by contrast, have great inherent empathy, breasts capable of ordinary lactation, child-bearing capabilities, orgasmic reaction to rape-scenarios, smaller lung size, less bone density etc., which can also be observed in the animal world. these biological facts tend to indicate that the manifestation of certain socially performative roles and idenities are, in fact, inferrable to some degree by the dictates of human nature. Hence, the social-performing of roles and the nature of gender identification are (according to the biological view) dictated by human physicality, these being determined by correlations between presently observed physical traits and historically manifested roles and identities in gender.

Thus, it seems unfair for you to accuse the biological claim of deriving its conclusions by inferring a biological essence based on an observation of social characteristics (and I don't even subscribe to that view).
#14850102
Voted biological, though in a way both options ultimately resolve down to biology because what else is "society" but an aggregate of biological entities...

I don't think there is any way our effete leftist philosophers can really squeamishly separate gender from the blood, sweat and semen of biological causality; nature red in tooth and claw.

I do think that chromosomes don't tell the whole story though, for there are other congenital and developmental phenomena at work which may impede full gender expression. We do see "girly men" who don't seem to have fully developed as proper males, presumably from lack of exercise, sheltered upbringing or other developmental issues.

So also for "butch" females.
#14850131
Victoribus Spolia wrote:@Wellsy,

I guess the biological-determinitive position would object that such "biological differentials" labeled as "the essence" of masculinity and feminity are not in fact extrapolated from an observation of social performativity, which seems to be your argument.

They would likely examine "common" characteristics of the historically manifested phenomena of social-performativity and correlate that to a reasonable and inferrable expression of biological sex in the social sphere.

For example (assuming the position that biological sex in some way determines gender). We see that the majority of tribes and civilizations, for the majority of the time, were patriarchal in their structure; wherein, males took the primary role as protector, leader, and provider; wherein, the women took the primary role of producing and caring for children in deference to the male position. Then, if we examine biological factors: males have better analytical capabilities, increased perceptual awareness, and greater muscle mass, heart size, and lung capacity, as well as increased aggression (from Testosterone) and such physical characteristics, can be observed in non-humans. Women, by contrast, have great inherent empathy, breasts capable of ordinary lactation, child-bearing capabilities, orgasmic reaction to rape-scenarios, smaller lung size, less bone density etc., which can also be observed in the animal world. these biological facts tend to indicate that the manifestation of certain socially performative roles and idenities are, in fact, inferrable to some degree by the dictates of human nature. Hence, the social-performing of roles and the nature of gender identification are (according to the biological view) dictated by human physicality, these being determined by correlations between presently observed physical traits and historically manifested roles and identities in gender.

Thus, it seems unfair for you to accuse the biological claim of deriving its conclusions by inferring a biological essence based on an observation of social characteristics (and I don't even subscribe to that view).

To speak more plainly, are you saying that there are biological facts of the sexes that then inform their behaviour not in a sense that they are born with a psychological tendency towards such things but just as conscious beings it draws them towards certain practices?
Like for example, women getting pregnant shapes their decision making in regards to sexual practices.
But what is lost here is of course the actually historical part, one has abstracted away society which actually gives the historically contingent form to the biological tendencies.
Women the world over can get pregnant, but the way a society is organized around the matter of pregnancy and child reading effects women's decision making.

This point of emphasizing the historical conditions that people's decisions are made within their real world conditions and not a metaphysical free will.
http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/10867/1/VWills_ETD_2011.pdf
Marx's second argument against Kantian morality is that its focus on the free will belies the extent to which the will is itself determined by material conditions and material interests. The abstraction of the “free will” is illegitimate according to Marx because it attempts to prize apart the intellectual life of individuals from their economic, social, and historical context. A person with a will that is “wholly independent of foreign causes determining it,” to adopt Kant's phrase, simply does not exist in reality, and therefore such a subject makes a rather poor starting point for moral theory. (Later, in 1853, Marx writes, there critiquing Hegel, “Is it not a delusion to substitute for the individual with his real motives, with multifarious social circumstances pressing upon him, the abstraction of “free-will” — one among the many qualities of man for man himself”74!)



And there are biological facts that have reasonable inference of a sex's behaviour.
For example, a prominent one being women's capacity to get pregnant, a enduring biological reality. But what isn't permanent like the capacity to get pregnant across all of human history, is the conditions of how we deal with sexual reproduction and this is most pivotal to the very form of behaviour.
https://www.marxists.org/archive/zetkin/1920/lenin/zetkin1.htm
Of course, thirst must be satisfied. But will the normal person in normal circumstances lie down in the gutter and drink out of a puddle, or out of a glass with a rim greasy from many lips? But the social aspect is most important of all.


This is the emphasis I make in which examining biological processes has been absolutely necessary to our understanding but modern thinkers conceive of reality in a set of independent ontologies unable to be bridges into a whole. Because if one functions from a primarily biological methodology and merely infers the social, then one hasn't really made a biosocial understanding of the nature of man that isn't strictly biological or social.
And what it does is leads to a reductionist view in explaining human behaviour, to give an example...
https://www.docdroid.net/uOmptrL/asc287-connell-raewyn-gender-differences-and-bodies-pp28-52.pdf#page=6
The idea of natural differences runs into difficulties on several fronts. Sociobiological explanations of human kinship, for instance, foundered when the predictions from genetics failed to match the realities of kinship systems actually documented by anthropologists (Sahlins 1977). It seems that social logic works independently of genetic logic. The explanation of gender hierarchy by a hormonal "aggression advantage' founders when it is discovered that higher testosterone levels follow from social dominance as much as they precede it (Kemper 1990)

Geary's argument, being recent and sophisticated, is particularly worth attention. Geary's account of sexual selection is based on individuals making choices that maximize their genetic payoff, very like firms in a free market maximizing their utilities in neo-classical ecnomic models. Geary can't really 'see' society as a reality, so his arguments don't have any place for institutionalized gender arrangements. For instance, in discussing the higher levels of violence among men than among women, all he can see is male vs male competition for reproductive resources; he cannot see military institutions, collective struggles, gendered interests and cultural definitions of manhood and womanhood. it is characteristic of this literature that Geary speaks constantly of 'males' and 'females', not 'men' and 'women'.

Lacking any account of social process, Geary constnatly falls back on evolutionary speculation to explain the facts of social life. it comes as a slight shock, after reading this 400-page monograph calling on the name of science and published by so august an institution as the American Psychological Association, to realize that the entire argument is speculation. Not one sex difference in psychological characteristics has actually been shown to result from evolutionary mechanisms.

Theordore Kemper (1990) argues that we need to replace the idea of natural differnece with a more complex chain of social-biologica-socail causation. Body-machine models of gender assume that hte machine runs by itself: that biological causation is indepdnent of society. But there have been no human (or even hominid) bodies outside society for a very long time. Social processes cna be traced for 2.5 million years, give or take a few weeks. (This is the approximate age of the earlist hand-tool cultures so far discovered by archaeologists (Semaw 2000). The discoery of such industries proves the social transmission of specific techniques for making stone tools, over this length of time.)

Kemper's causal model is inadequate in that the real causality is a constant one of biological and social and whilst necessary to have studied in independent methodologies, the reality is that wo/man is whole.
https://www.marxists.org/archive/ilyenkov/works/essays/essay2.htm
There are not two different and originally contrary objects of investigation body and thought, but only one single object, which is the thinking body of living, real man (or other analogous being, if such exists anywhere in the Universe), only considered from two different and even opposing aspects or points of view. Living, real thinking man, the sole thinking body with which we are acquainted, does not consist of two Cartesian halves ‘thought lacking a body’ and a ‘body lacking thought’. In relation to real man both the one and the other are equally fallacious abstractions, and one cannot in the end model a real thinking man from two equally fallacious abstractions.
...
This simple and profoundly true idea was expressed this way by Spinoza in the language of his time: thought and extension are not two special substances as Descartes taught, but only two attributes of one and the same organ; not two special objects, capable of existing separately and quite independently of each other, but only two different and even opposite aspects under which one and the same thing appears, two different modes of existence, two forms of the manifestation of some third thing.

The Cartesian dualism was necessary to us becoming more understanding of ourselves, but it is also the case that his abstraction of man is not a reflection of the real existing man.
And such, one should concieve of a human nature that is properly biosocial.
Spoiler: show
]https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/spirkin/works/dialectical-materialism/ch05-s02.html
When discussing biological factors, one should not reduce them to the genetic. More attention should be given to the physiological and ontogenetic aspects of development, and particularly to those that evoke a pathological effect, for it is these that modify the biology of the human being, who is also beginning to perceive even social factors in quite a different way. Dialectics does not simply put the social and the biological factors on an equal footing and attribute the human essence to the formula of biotropic-sociotropic determination favoured by some scientists. It stresses the dominant role of the social factors. Nor does dialectics accept the principles of vulgar sociologism, which ignores the significance of the biological principle in man.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/fromm/works/1961/man/ch04.htm
Of course, Marx was never tempted to assume that "human nature" was identical with that particular expression of human nature prevalent in his own society. In arguing against Bentham, Marx said: "To know what is useful for a dog, one must study dog nature. This nature itself is not to be deduced from the principle of utility. Applying this to man, he that would criticize all human acts, movements, relations, etc., by the principle of utility, must first deal with human nature in general, and then with human nature as modified in each historical epoch." [22] It must be noted that this concept of human nature is not, for Marx -- as it was not either for Hegel -an abstraction. It is the essence of man -- in contrast to the various forms of his historical existence -- and, as Marx said, "the essence of man is no abstraction inherent in each separate individual." [23] It must also be stated that this sentence from Capital, written by the "old Marx," shows the continuity of the concept of man's essence ( Wesen) which the young Marx wrote about in the Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts. He no longer used the term "essence" later on, as being abstract and unhistorical, but he clearly retained the notion of this essence in a more historical version, in the differentiation between "human nature in general" and "human nature as modified" with each historical period.

In line with this distinction between a general human nature and the specific expression of human nature in each culture, Marx distinguishes, as we have already mentioned above, two types of human drives and appetites: the constant or fixed ones, such as hunger and the sexual urge, which are an integral part of human nature, and which can be changed only in their form and the direction they take in various cultures, and the "relative" appetites, which are not an integral part of human nature but which "owe their origin to certain social structures and certain conditions of production and communication." [24] Marx gives as an example the needs produced by the capitalistic structure of society. "The need for money," he wrote in the Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts, "is therefore the real need created by the modern economy, and the only need which it creates.... This is shown subjectively, partly in the fact that the expansion of production and of needs becomes an ingenious and always calculating subservience to inhuman, depraved, unnatural, and imaginary appetites." [25]


And the emphasis from the biological into social is characteristic of evolutionary psychology which takes shared cultural trends and infers adaptionist underpinnings.
https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/evolutionary-psychology/
If the traits of interest to evolutionary psychologists are universally distributed, then we should expect to find them in all humans. This partly explains the stock that evolutionary psychologists put in cross cultural psychological tests (see e.g. Buss 1990). If we find evidence for the trait in a huge cross section of humans, then this supports our view that the trait is an adaptation —on the assumption that adaptations are organ-like traits that are products of natural selection but not subject to variation. But given the wider scope view of evolution defended by philosophers of biology, this method of testing seems wrong-headed as a test of an evolutionary hypothesis. Certainly such testing can result in the very interesting results that certain preference profiles are widely shared cross culturally but the test does not speak to the evolutionary hypothesis that the preferences are adaptations (cf. Lloyd 1999; Buller 2005).

But of course observing similarities between societies with a distinction between being male or female doesn't allow a clear inference of adaptionism.
http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/myl/ldc/GrayEP.pdf
A classic example of the distinction between implicit and explicit cognitive function is to ask bicycle riders what they would do if their bike started tilting to one side. Many bikers respond that they would lean to the other side to right themselves. This is incorrect and would result in the person falling off the bike every few meters. Surprisingly, people seem to be quite capable of riding over long distances with no mishap. When placed on a bike, if it starts to tilt, people turn the handlebars, using their momentum to right their center of gravity, avoiding the fall. This function is independent of general processing, exists without awareness, and is specific to the bike-riding domain. So do we have an evolved bike-riding module? The answer is obviously no. Obvious because there is an apparent learning phase to bike riding where people do fall off every few meters (and, yes, because of the paucity of bicycles in the Pleistocene). In an area where the learning phase is less apparent, and the Pleistocene pressure more plausible, such “modules,” created by the most fundamental of learning processes, can readily but incorrectly be heralded as evolved traits.

Cosmides and Tooby’s second method of inferring adaptation is equally problematic. Just because a behavioral trait is found across cultures does not necessarily mean it is a product of adaptive evolution. Comparative psychologists have emphasized for decades that species-specific behaviors can arise through species-specific patterns of experience (Gray, 2001; Gottlieb, 1976; Lerhman, 1970). People the world over eat soup out of a bowl and not off of a plate. Gravity acts the whole world over and people adjust their behavior in light of this. The whole world over there is a benefit to cheating (providing you don’t get caught) and a benefit to being able to know when you’re being cheated. The fact that cheater detection is crosscultural does not automatically mean it is an evolutionary adaptation.


And if there are not to be sex specific psychological modules...
Spoiler: show
https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/evolutionary-psychology/#MasModHyp
(2) Such systems, when complex, need to have massively modular organization.
...
The second type of argument is one side of a perennial debate in the philosophy of cognitive science. Fodor (2000, 68) takes this argument to rest on the unwarranted assumption that there is no domain-independent criterion of cognitive success, which he thinks requires an argument that evolutionary psychologists do not provide. Samuels (see esp. Samuels 1998) responds to evolutionary psychologists that arguments of this type do not sufficiently discriminate between a conclusion about domain specific processing mechanisms and domain specific knowledge or information. Samuels articulates what he calls the “library model of cognition” in which there is domain specific information or knowledge but domain general processing. The library model of cognition is not massively modular in the relevant sense but type two arguments support it. According to Samuels, evolutionary psychologists need something more than this type of argument to warrant their specific kind of conclusion about massive modularity. Buller (2005) introduces further worries for this type of argument by tackling the assumption that there can be no such thing as a domain general problem solving mechanism. Buller worries that in their attempt to support this claim, evolutionary psychologists fail to adequately characterize a domain general problem solver. For example, they fail to distinguish between a domain general problem solver and a domain specific problem solver that is over generalized. He offers the example of social learning as a domain general mechanism that would produce domain specific solutions to problems. He uses a nice biological analogy to drive this point home: the immune system is a domain general system in that it allows the body to respond to a wide variety of pathogens. While it is true that the immune system produces domain specific responses to pathogens in the form of specific antibodies, the antibodies are produced by one domain general system. These and many other respondents conclude that type two arguments do not adequately support the massive modularity thesis.

...then it is because people's behaviour is in relation to the world itself, not something that originates purely within them beyond the basic drives of all humans. You might wish to speak to more specific things in which say hormones cause this, but the problem here is a causality that clearly considers the person in isolation from the influence of the environment.
One needs a causality in which there is constant feedback rather than trying to find a linear path because reality isn't strictly linear int he mechanical materialist fashion that arose with natural science.
So for example, evidence supports that women behave similar to men sexually when they're in positions of power.
Spoiler: show
http://leeds-faculty.colorado.edu/mcgrawp/PDF/Lammers.Stoker.Jordan.Pollmann.Stapel.2011.pdf
Third, we aimed to determine whether the power-infidelity link was as strong for women as for men. Many researchers have found that, overall, women are less likely than men to be unfaithful. This effect has been explained by the fact that for evolutionary reasons, women should be more oriented than men toward binding to one powerful partner in a stable relationship. Other researchers have proposed that this oftenfound gender difference in infidelity is at least partly due to differences in the socioeconomic position of men and women. According to this proposal, if women were to obtain independent sources of income and power, their dependence on their partners would decrease, and their likelihood of being unfaithful would increase (Buller, 2005; Eagly & Wood, 1999; Smuts, 1992; Wood & Eagly, 2007).

Our findings clearly support this latter view. Gender did not moderate the effects we found. Among women who had an independent source of income (as all our female respondents did, because they were working professionals), power had a positive relationship with infidelity, and this relationship was comparable to that found among men. These findings were not likely caused by a statistical artifact; our sample was large and included similar numbers of men and women. If social desirability had affected the responses, it most likely would have suppressed responses more strongly for women than for men (Whisman & Snyder, 2007). It also seems unlikely that the observed effects are specific to the Dutch culture. Although The Netherlands is often seen as a liberal country in regard to sexual issues, most Dutch people find adultery unacceptable (Kraaykamp, 2002). According to the World Values Survey Association (2000), the opinion of the Dutch on adultery ranks 30th among the 47 countries investigated. The Dutch score, 2.7 on a 5-point scale ranging from unacceptable to acceptable, is similar to the scores of the Belgians, Germans, Canadians, Japanese, and Russians.

Clearly, power increases infidelity among women, as it does among men. An emerging literature demonstrates that this is not an isolated finding; researchers studying the effect of (manipulated) power on participants’ attention to attractive individuals (Brady et al., 2011), tendency to overestimate the degree to which other people are sexually interested in them (Kunstman & Maner, 2011; Lerner, 2011), and sexual approach behaviors (Wilkey, 2011) have also found equally strong effects of power for women and for men. Together, these findings suggest that women in high-power positions are as likely to engage in infidelity as are men in high-power positions.


Why is this? Because their position in the world when made similar reveals that it's not sex that deteremined their behaviour their general human nature within that social position that gives them certain power, stability, influence and so on.
The idea of some strictly determined male or female behaviour is simply ignoring the world that shapes a person's decision making. Now this doesn't state that there are no differences between men and women, there clearly are, but they aren't that significant in delinting a clear sexual difference between men as much as the conditions of existence that dictate the standards of what a wo/man can do in society or not.

And so I don't think it's unfair because whilst it seems that you're saying that they start from the biological and infer social outcomes. But what do you think happens when one observes different outcomes between the sexes? How do they explain it? Well it's because men and women are biologically different of course is the explanation, sex specific adaptions.
It's can end up as kind of referentialism
Referentialist views of language treat words as standing for, or referring to, objects. While Wittgenstein’s Tractatus[9] espoused such a view, he later came to think one of the Tractatus crucial failings was that it ignored the difference between alternate kinds of words and uses of language.[10] Consider the words ‘table’, ‘blue’ and ‘hot’, these do not all signify objects, and understanding the words does not in each case involve knowing what objects they stand for. Rather, according to Wittgenstein, it involves knowing how the words are used.[11] Consequently treating reference as central to meaning gives a one sided and inaccurate view of language.

However in psychology this referentialist doctrine seems alive: In the misplaced reification of concepts as ‘concrete’ tangible things. As Gould[12] argues, there is a strong tendency to believe that whatever received a name must be an entity or being, having an independent existence of its own. However on a Wittgensteinian take, we can reasonably be sure that no such ‘concept-entities’ can be found among the neurons in a person’s skull, they are concepts not concrete things. Confusing the two is equivalent to confusing a “map with a territory.” [13] Essentially it involves taking a pattern of behaviour, naming it, then taking this named thing to be a physical entity, then viewing someone’s behaviour as caused by having this entity inside them. Confusing psychological concepts with inner entities, like so, leads to postulating metaphysical explanations which actuality explain nothing. It is equivalent to saying a volcano erupts because it has ‘eruptability’ inside, or to say someone’s nervous behaviour is caused by an inner ‘neuroses’. This is merely to repeat the observation that they tend to behave in a nervous manner. The explanation merely repeats the description of the initial behaviour, yet the vacuousness of the explanation is concealed by pointing to a mystified inner entity; ‘neurosis’. This form of referentialism survives in psychology and leads to much conceptual confusion, distorting our notion of causality and providing only vacuous explanations[J1] .[14]

This is pretty much what evo. psych does with it's claim to specific sex based adaptionist modules.
#14850150
Victoribus Spolia wrote:How one self-identifies and what roles such an identity participates in, are both subsets to the concept of gender. Its like asking someone who uses the term "vertabrate" as a point of contrast to "Invertabrate" whether or not they are speaking of mammals or reptiles.


Well, gender roles are a purely social construct, while gender identity is mostly biological for cis people and psychological or neurological for trans people.

So the answer is different according to which you are asking about.
#14850210
Depends what you mean by gender. If you mean gender dysphoria, then it's biological.

If you're speaking more of gender roles in society, then it's heavily influenced by upbringing and social circumstances, but not totally.

As the older sister of brothers, I would be expected to be the motherly, nurturing type, when I've turned out to be devious, manipulative and a filthy fighter.

A short while ago, the BBC carried out an informal experiment by dressing two ten month old babies in clothes usually worn by the opposite sex. That is, they dressed the little girl in denim dungarees and a stripy tee shirt and the little boy in a pretty dress and cardigan.

Adults were then introduced to one of the babies and left to play with them for ten minutes.

In all cases the adults chose the soft toys and girly things for the little boy and the toy truck and bricks for the little girl. Interestingly, they were far more gentle with the little boy than they were with the girl.

Afterwards, they were all rueful about how easy it is to reinforce gender roles without realising it

Of course, the babies didn't care. The little girl was happily crawling around the floor after the truck and knocking down brick towers and the little boy was enjoying cuddling the toy rabbit.
#14850261
Pants-of-dog wrote: Well, gender roles are a purely social construct, while gender identity is mostly biological for cis people and psychological or neurological for trans people.

So the answer is different according to which you are asking about.


Whether or not gender roles are a social construct is part of what is being contended, and I would say identity is the same thing.

Are traditional "masculine" roles determined, in any sense, by the biological make-up of the male-sex? Likewise, in deviant cases, is homosexual or transsexual behavior (which encompasses roles and identities) biologically determined in any sense?

Even in the example you used in an attempt to differentiate, the nature of identification assumes roles to a degree. For instance, a man who transitions to being a woman as a transgender phenomena will typically do more than augment their breasts and remove their male genitals, often they grown long hair and wear feminine clothing etc., and in fact, if told such a person that they could do the former physical changes but not the latter "social" changes, they often would not have transitioned at all as the physical augmentation was used as a means of acquiring the desired role. If this is the case, then whatever happens regarding transgenderism is not merely psychological, but has a lot to do with roles as socially defined, and those "stereotypical" roles are argued to have direct relationships to biological determinisms by many and not without warrant: e.g. men are larger and have higher aggression due to testosterone, so is the "machismo" culture in Latin America purely social then?. Women have higher levels of empathy and bear offspring, so is the "role" of homemaker "purely" and "only" social, or has biology informed this role? How does this explain men transitioning from one identity to the other?

I am not making an argument either way at this point, I am just defending why this is a good poll, and (in point of fact), the mixed results in the polling data seem to indicate that this is an actual point of confusion and contention among PoFo members.

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