democracy, Essays, free speech, free speech under attack, latest, UK
Comments 89

How Queer Theory Became University Policy

by Michael Biggs, [edited by Sarah Mills], via Conatus News

The establishment of an official doctrine on gender identity is an unprecedented threat to academic freedom. Sex and gender should be subjects for debate.

My university has recently established an official doctrine on gender, promulgated by its Equality and Diversity Unit. The University of Oxford declares that sex is not determined at conception but rather ‘assigned’ at birth, presumably on the whim of the midwife or obstetrician. Sex must be replaced for all practical purposes by an individual’s sense of gender identity, which may be chosen from a lengthy menu including nonbinary and genderqueer.

Oxford is not peculiar, for the same doctrine is being instituted across British universities. This doctrine is derived from queer theory, an outgrowth of postmodernism. To understand how this esoteric discourse became the new orthodoxy, we need to follow the work of Gendered Intelligence, the charitable interest company that translates queer theory into public policy. Its chief executive is Jay Stewart MBE, a transman with a doctorate in Visual Cultures from Goldsmiths, University of London. The company started with a grant of £50,000 from the Equality and Human Rights Commission [1]. Now most of its revenue comes from selling training to the public sector, boosted by a gift of £116,000 from BBC Children in Need.

‘Queer theory was the roadmap to my own self-understanding’, declares Stewart [2]. The theory’s high priestess, Judith Butler, argues that ‘the body is not a “being,” but a variable boundary, a surface whose permeability is politically regulated, a signifying practice within a cultural field of gender hierarchy and compulsory heterosexuality’ [3]. The upshot is that gender identity bears no relationship to biology. According to Gendered Intelligence, ‘A woman is still a woman, even if she enjoys getting blow jobs. Thus Stewart was the prime mover in persuading the prison service to prioritise gender identity over sex [4]. The policy recently enabled a convicted rapist to be incarcerated in a women’s prison, simply because he called himself a woman; he then sexually assaulted other inmates.

Like other variants of postmodernism, queer theory has been ensconced for decades in academic disciplines studying culture. Now, however, the theory is being established as official doctrine by universities. Policy goes far beyond what is required by the Equality Act, which rightly forbids discrimination on the grounds of gender reassignment. Indeed, the doctrine clearly contravenes the law in one respect. The Act also protects sexual orientation, but if gender identity supersedes sex, then heterosexuality and homosexuality disappear. Any male can declare himself to be a lesbian, like a bad joke from the 1970s updated for our ultrawoke era. The Edinburgh University Student Association’s LGBT+ Convenor, Ada Wells, demanded that the University expel any lesbian who refused males identifying as ‘gender neutral’ (such as Wells) as potential sexual partners.

“Like other variants of postmodernism, queer theory has been ensconced for decades in academic disciplines studying culture. Now, however, the theory is being established as official doctrine by universities.”

Gendered Intelligence plays a key role in training academic staff and administrators. Its course on ‘Trans Awareness’ has been repeated in dozens of universities. Merton College at Oxford, for example, paid the company to train ‘key staff members from the Lodge, Academic Office, Warden’s Office, Finance and Domestic Bursaries, Library, Welfare Team, Development Office, and HR, along with a number of Governing Body Fellows’. The Oxford University Student Union now wants to mandate this training for all staff in welfare roles, to be repeated every two years [5]. The impetus comes not only from students but also from the Equality Challenge Unit, the quango charged with administering diversity to British higher education. The Athena SWAN Charter, originally designed to advance the careers of women in science, is now used as leverage to enforce gender doctrine.

Students who question their own identity are directed to Gendered Intelligence, which also trains university counsellors. When an undergraduate—previously diagnosed with depression—at the Royal Central School for Speech and Drama decided that she was a man, the School paid for mentoring by Gendered Intelligence. (A professor at the School is a trustee of the company and Stewart’s partner.) The mentor researched surgeons who offered elective mastectomy. ‘Surgery will affect sex in many ways’, advises Gendered Intelligence, ‘but the most noticeable effect is a boost in body confidence.’ If gender identity is uncorrelated with sex and is fluid and changing, how then can that identity require irreversible bodily transformations? Logical contradiction is no embarrassment to postmodernism. When a lesbian takes testosterone and amputates her breasts in order to play the part of a man, this is celebrated by queer theory for deconstructing compulsory heterosexuality.

“When an undergraduate—previously diagnosed with depression—at the Royal Central School for Speech and Drama decided that she was a man, the School paid for mentoring by Gendered Intelligence…The mentor researched surgeons who offered elective mastectomy.”

The establishment of an official doctrine on gender identity is an unprecedented threat to academic freedom. Sex and gender should be subjects for robust research and vigorous debate. Instead, scholars who query the new orthodoxy of queer theory are subjected to vicious harassment and intimidation. Almost all are women, and many incline towards radical feminism. The culprits are ultrawoke students—most do not identify as transgender but style themselves as ‘allies’—and some feminist academics. They can claim, however, that their aggression is licensed by university policy. After all, universities have granted one particular group extraordinary power to control intellectual discourse. ‘If a trans person informs a staff member that a word or phrasing is inappropriate or offensive,’ warns University College London, ‘then that staff member should take their word for it, and adjust their phraseology accordingly.

Welcome to the 21st century university, where sex has disappeared, homosexuality is exclusionary, and orthodoxy is enforced in the name of diversity.

Michael Biggs is Associate Professor of Sociology and Fellow of St Cross College, University of Oxford

NOTES:

  • [1] Equality and Human Rights Commission, response to Freedom of Information request (FOI 1247 Biggs), 2 October 2018
  • [2] Jay Stewart, ‘Gendered Intelligence’, Trans Britain: Our Journey from the Shadows, ed. Christine Burns, Cornerstone, 2018, pp. 277–91, at p. 278
  • [3] Judith Butler, Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity, Routledge, 1990, p. 139
  • [4] Stewart advised the Ministry of Justice’s review which created the new policy and now serves on the Prison Service’s Transgender Advisory Board which implements it
  • [5] Oxford Student Union LGBTQ+ Campaign, 2018 Report on Transgender Experience and Transphobia at the University of Oxford, p. 32. The report literally recommends ‘bi-annual’ training but presumably biennial was intended.

89 Comments

  1. frank says

    https://www.rt.com/usa/445172-transgender-child-mom-court/

    “James, a six-year-old boy from Dallas, Texas is caught up in a violent custody battle between his parents. And it’s the boy’s gender identity that’s at the very heart of it.

    His mother is dressing him as a girl and has the child going by the name “Luna.” She claims James is viewing himself as a girl and had him diagnosed with gender dysmorphia. She also enrolled James at school under the name “Luna.” All his classmates know him as a girl.

    The child’s father tells a different story. He claims that, when he’s at his house, James is willingly dressing himself as a boy, identifies as one, and goes by his birth name, James. The father is fighting his ex-wife’s push to start their child’s transition as young as possible.

    James could be facing chemical castration as soon as he turns eight, if his mother has her way.

    • Paula C Williams says

      The Rights of the Child,part of the Declaration of Human Rights must me used here to protect this child.Nothing should be done medically until the child is old enough to decide. The parents also need advice on taking the demands they are imposing. The child should be free to experiment with gender norms without being labelled as a ‘boy’ or a ‘girl’.

      • frank says

        Sure, except that standard procedure is to start children on the transition as soon as possible, as this example illustrates.

        (Studies show that for most children or teenagers all this experimentation is just a phase and they grow out of it. Which explains the high suicide rate -which is just the tip of the iceberg- among transgenders.)

  2. BigB says

    The identification of the rejection of binary gender (Queer Theory, the nonbinary ‘transgender agenda’, the ‘gaming’ and enforced orthodoxy of sexual and genderqueer identity) as coming from something called ‘Postmodernism’ (and tacitly ‘Cultural Marxism’): places it firmly as a subset of a larger debate – that of Modernism versus Postmodernism. The simplistic reductionism and objectification of Postmodernism as an incoherent, logically flawed, morally relativistic, subjectivised and irrational assault on Reason and objectivity is tacitly proposed by the current subject matter, and addressed (pro and contra) in the comments below. I broadly agree with the points raised above in the article, but see them as symptomatic: not in themselves causal. To uncover the deep cognitive causality: and perhaps move toward a resolution, or at least deeper understanding: the issues must be located in a broader psychological and philosophical context.

    Before we totally demonise PoMo and indulge in virtual book burning (which seems to be where the broader debate is heading): would it not be more enlightened to examine the cultural phenomena more deeply? Is PoMo truly causal: or in itself a symptom of a deeper malaise? Yes, we can all laugh at a section of Mein Kampf being rewritten in PoMo jargonese and accepted for publication …but does that not risk just trivialising the debate? There are peoples lives, gender and identities being victimised and destroyed here: to the ultimate benefit of …? There are serious issues that may be ignored by superficial and reactionary analysis: issues that affect every level of culture …including mind and identity formation. Perhaps the broad debate should encourage book reading before book burning: to try and understand both sides of the debate about gender and set it in a wider historical context (did identity and gender issues stem entirely from the Continent in the ’60s?) …rather than scapegoating a conveniently decontextualised pseudo-cause (PoMo)?

    The fear of what follows even a virtual book burning should be impetus enough to question more deeply?

    Another day I will expand the argument that Postmodernism – as a frame of reference – is nothing more than a cultural container …a conveniently designated waste disposal bin in which to toss Nietzsche; Husserl-Heidegger-Sartrean phenomenology; Saussure-Pierce-Barthes semiotics; Existentialism …along with the obvious Derrida, Foucault, Lyotard, Rorty …I guess I ought to add Judith Butler …and last, but not least – Marx. Anything that can be wrapped in a “Continental Philosophy”, or “French” or “German School” (or ‘Cultural Marxism’) winding sheet. All consigned as surplus to history: in deference to and in defence of …?

    [Ayn Rand, perhaps?]

    The short, but unstated answer to that is ‘Modernism’; the (predominantly Cartesian-Newtonian-Darwinian) Enlightenment Synthesis; the Anglo-American analytical philosophers; Logical Positivism. Are these philosophies benign and unproblematic, as the ideologues behind this debate would have us believe?

    [Continental v Anglo-American: an inherence of latent racism?]

    A comparative analysis of Modernism and PoMo is beyond a comment: but Modernism is a euphemism for Western imperialism and libertarian democracy bombing …as many have identified. A more intelligent debate might want to look at why PoMo …or Structuralism, post-Structuralism, post-Analytic v Rationalism, Situationism, Semiotics, Phenomenology, Existentialism: to include just some of the Schools of Thought that are being thrown out in favour of capitalism …why PoMo developed as a rational and logical response to the mathematicisation and mechanisation of thought that Russell, North Whitehead, early Wittgenstein, Frege, Carnap, Godel, Quine (the Anglo-American analytical philosophers) among others proposed?

    [Why is there not a ‘Vienna Circle’ conspiracy theory to compliment the ‘Frankfurt School’ CT?]

    If the broad context is appreciated: the question can be empirically raised – did gender issues and forced orthodoxy really stem from a blanket banner labelled PoMo? Could the answers to this, and other identity issues, be answered by what is hidden under the pseudo-PoMo banner – a side of the debate that faces potential political censure? Did human suffering and gender dysphoria really start with Foucault? What relevance and responsibility does Cartesian duality and (Modernist) separation bear on identity and gender issues? Does a binary and dualistic language-function have any bearing on the outcome of the debate? What about a mathematical logic-function? Are we looking at a deep seated, inherent and accustomed differentiation and discrimination that is falsely being ascribed as a pseudo-object – falsely labelled as ‘PoMo’ – and silenced? Is PoMo even causal or symptomatic, or is it being identified, objectified and demonised as a diversion and distraction from a deeper cause? If so, what is the deeper causality?

    [Is that tell-tale MO of reductionist demonisation not a clue?]

    Rather than revert to Modernism, and the perversion and subversion of Enlightenment values that is the United States’ indispensable imperium – which I presume no one wants – is there an alternative beyond the subjectivist/objectivist dualistic merry-go-round of Becoming (binary cyclic existence; Samskara; Bhavachakra).

    That is the debate I would prefer, because the answer is yes …just as soon as we can get off the merry-go-round.

    First, we have to recognise the merry-go-round of identity: beyond the manifestation of a conveniently labelled “deviant” philosophy.

  3. Robbobbobin says

    “The Oxford University Student Union now wants to mandate this training for all staff in welfare roles, to be repeated every two years.”

    Identity-booster shots every two years regardless? I didn’t know that.

    As I understand it, even an innoculation against possible exposure to rabies consists of only three or four shots over two or three weeks, then no further such intervention is necessary unless another possible exposure to the virus occurs.

    Therefore, in order to avoid any unnecessarily over-regularized disruptions in the scheduling of my exquisite lifestyle experience of my unique post-modern self while simultaneously acknowledging the convenience of conforming to traditional pre-modern pro-lemming norms, I am seriously considering changing my gender self assignment status to “rabid”.

  4. Frankly Speaking says

    Isn’t transgenderism and sex change yet another great revenue opportunity for Corporations to fleece us further? Eventually there will be no few if any natural conceptions and births, it will all be a profitable industrial process.

    • frank says

      It’s social engineering on a massive scale. This is not some spontaneous movement, it’s organized and heavily funded. And they’re getting in on the ground level:

      A teacher exposes the LGBT agenda coming into in elementary schools:
      https://hooktube.com/watch?v=4QYifNmanpA

      (Ignore the religious stuff, what’s being revealed is chilling, the fact that the speaker is a bible thumper does not change that.)

  5. Paula C Williams says

    My understanding is that human beings are biologically female or male at birth. If there are any physical variations to this, the primary sex organs ie a womb or penis are the defining ones. Gender, or how society imposes expected behaviour on on an individual ie masculinity or femininity is not permament. Our patriarchal society must change and stop imposing limitations ;shaping people into roles their inner selves do not accept. Until then,even though one one must be free to live as a man though born female (and visa versa), in institutions as they are at present , having the body of a male or a female must remain on record, on passports, birth certificates etc. Males very early on in this patriarchal society, are taught ‘masculinity’ which assumes superiority, to have no feelings to rape and control.Women must still be weak, emotional etc.
    So the example of the trans woman in a prison who raped a woman prisoner, if this is true, shows that anyone capable of rape physically ie have a penis, should be imprisoned with other men.

    4
    3
    • Paula, at last some physiological sense in this Oxford U madhouse. Sex is a biological mating complementarity: male & female for animals and most vegetables, rising to about 6 different “mating types” in micro organisms such as yeast. Gender is what nouns in Classical Languages have: Masculine for Sun, Feminine for Moon, and Neutral for many lesser objects. Homosexual and Heterosexual are how certain individuals like their fun, irrespective of the possibility of biological procreation.

      Are there no scholars left in the Home of Lost Causes?

      • Paula C Williams says

        Vexarb, as more genders demand recognition society will become non gendered. Hope we get there.

        1
        3
        • Paula, just like the English Language has “already got there”: nouns in English have no gender. And nobody seems to miss it (though I am old enough to remember boats and cars being referred to as “she”). Englishmen are of Sex Male, and Englishwomen are of Sex Female, even though the noun “man” is not of Gender Masculine, nor is the noun “woman” of Gender Feminine.

          When this Gender-Fever has gone the way of Chlorophyll Tablets, there will be Manly Men and Womanly Women and the whole gamut of dramatis personae still playing their role in the Human Comedy — as always.

    • frank says

      “shaping people into roles their inner selves do not accept”

      Promoting that men become women and women become men, yeah, that makes perfect sense.

      And maybe check the last few links of that list I posted earlier.

      This website must be high on the watchlist, the sockpuppets never fail to show up.

  6. frank says

    The trans agenda in action:

    Austria’s ‘bearded lady’ Conchita Wurst wins Eurovision 10 May 2014

    University of Manchester bans clapping, suggests students use ‘jazz hands’ instead

    Weather Channel Goes PC with “Snowperson”

    Should women be spelt womxn?

    Twitter Permanently Bans Feminist For Writing That ‘Men Aren’t Women’

    New Twitter rules ban misgendering, deadnaming

    Institutionalizing The Trans Revolution

    The Boy Scouts Are Dropping The “Boy” From Their Program Name To Welcome Girls

    Kindergarten celebrates 5-year-old transgender ‘transition;’ kids traumatized

    Ontario Makes Disapproval Of Kid’s Gender Choice Potential Child Abuse

    Brown U. censors ‘gender dysphoria’ study, worried that findings might ‘invalidate the perspectives’ of transgender community

    Sweden’s State Curriculum Forces Preschoolers to Act Like the Opposite Gender

    Boys Encouraged to Wear Nail Polish, Massage Each Other at Gender Neutral School

    Christian doctor is SACKED by the Government for refusing to identify patients by their preferred gender because he believes sex is established at birth

    BBC issues badges to heterosexual staff who promote LGBT issues in a bid to tackle its ‘heteronormative culture’

    Altrincham Grammar School for Girls ban on calling pupils ‘girls’ – because it’s hurtful to transgender people

    Gender-neutral toilets planned at all-girls school in case any pupils decide to transition

    Boys Allowed to Wear Skirts at Uppingham School in Rutland, UK

    Oxford university students told to use ‘ze’ instead or ‘he’ or ‘she’

    Glasgow primary schools to install unisex toilets for pupils

    Skirts for boys at private Highgate School under plans for gender-neutral uniform

    School bans boys from wearing shorts, telling them to wear skirts instead

    Girls banned from wearing skirts at 40 secondary schools across England

    17 Mostly Autistic Children From One UK School In Process Of Changing Their Gender

    Primary one children will be told ‘your gender is what you decide’

    ‘What quantum physics taught me about queer identity’

    Drag queens sent to nursery schools to teach kids as young as two about ‘gender diversity’

    British Primary Schools Get ‘Trans-Inclusive Environment’ Training

    U.K. schools to offer kids sex-change book as transitioning tool

    Probe Ordered into Massive Rise in Girls Seeking Gender Reassignment

    Children seeking gender identity advice sees 100% increase, says NHS

    Childhood demand for gender transition treatment surges to record high

    Demand for Sex Reassignment Treatment in Britain Has Surged in the Last Decade

    T is for TRANS! – Transgender: QUEER KID STUFF #12 (video)

    NY Library Brings Drag Queens to Kids Story Hour (video)

    Leftist Books For Brainwashing Kids (video)

    ‘Mommy, Mommy, I Don’t Want to Be a Boy!’ (video)

    Three Facts Those Promoting Transgenderism Ignore (video)

    I Want My Sex Back. Detransitioned transgender people who regretted changing sex (video)

    Transgender People More Likely To Develop Depression And Anxiety

    High rates of suicide and self-harm among transgender youth

    Transgender Suicide Attempt Rates Are Staggering

    11
    • Thomas Prentice says

      Yes, I recall seeing every one of these articles on bbc, cnn, newstatesman, the new york times, cbs, skynews, msDNC, lmnop …..

  7. Rhamphotyphlops says

    It appears that part of the problem is that one term is being used to cover what is potentially more than one category. Perhaps there needs to be a genetic identity, a hormonal/physical identity and a psychological/self identity. This would at least make it easier for academics to study the subject without falling foul of the identity police. It would also make it easier to classify people by their genetic identity where required such as for prisons, without getting into arguments about what they self identify as.

    • Thomas Prentice says

      This AIN’T DA PROBLEM. CAPITALISM IZ DA PROBLEM, CLASS IZ DA PROBLEM, Empire iz da problem, Wall Street and City of London iz da problem …

  8. Kathy says

    Why is it easier to change our bodies then polarized mind sets. I worry that this whole gender politics is driving a lot of depressed and confused people to greater depression and confusion. There seems to be a huge shift to shut down anyone who queries these things. Not just in universities but in the M.S.M and it does make me feel uncomfortable about the way this is being driven. A manufactured confusion of gender construct and a shutting down of debate. If universities shut down debate on this one they are in effect losing a brilliant opportunity to expand the nature and nurture gender debate. Suppressing conflicting or different views is quite worrying. It is usually a total belief of being right that generally suggest everything may be going wrong.
    Over the last 20 years toys books the media and most consumerism has polarized the concept of gender.I have often wondered if all this was deliberately set up to herald this new gender identity politics agenda. The idea that girls are pink and boys are blue has predominated to such an extent that it is not surprising that people and the young especially are having greater gender crisis. The manufacturing of such rigid difference between boys and girls and particularly the expectation of girls to be pretty princesses all glittery and girly girl and boys all trucks diggers and blue. All this shows to me is society dictates most of what determines gender identity and not nature.
    The easy access to porn accessibility for a younger and younger age group must have had a huge impact on how gender and sexuality is perceived and navigated for both genders alike. This has helped to desensitize and corrupt the way men and women view each other in a way that has created much more division and confusion over role play and normalized behavior of both the sexes. It is not surprising that vulnerable youngsters start to query who they are during puberty to an even greater degree then they ever did. The nurturing and loving aspect of both genders has been usurped by self gratification self obsession and a new conformity to a fantasy model of both men and women… The need and desire for women to cut and mutilate their bodies as soon as is legally possible to live up to and embrace some cartoon porn caricature of womanhood is quite depressing.This toxic stereotyping cocktail leaches into all aspects of modern culture.
    Both men and women require mutual love and trust. Both men and women are capable of compassionate care giving, as well as practical multitasking spacial awareness and academic roles
    What I find most interesting is that theories of brain difference in male and female [other then size] have been proven to be non existent yet they still persist. The brain expands its capacity of learning skills due to practice and expansion of learned tasks. This is not specific to gender. The biological differences of male and female have been debated and deliberated throughout human existence. The practicality of who does what as roles in relationships does not really clarify any fundamental difference in brain or emotion between the sexes but has been set to focus on as division. We may theorize about cave man life and ancient anthropology but as with archeology all our theorizing is based on the way we perceive these things in our own period of time. Most rituals around gender tend to be focused on the obvious biological and not any emotional or brain perceived differences of gender.The first and most divisive divide and rule. A pitching of the sexes against each other. Like all divide and rule we have been set up.
    What seems to be occurring now is that all of the work done to recognize and embrace the similarities, balance and equality of status based on being humans living a shared experience and all trying to make sense of our world. Is being usurped by a concept based on a traumatic and fearful wrongness of being [you]. A view of gender now dictated and directed by a narrowing outer model of what constitutes male and female. Any sense of being who you are born as, as being yourself. A construct of a narrowed window of what {normal} gender is meant to be lived as. This feeling of wrongness of self feels deliberately manufactured to promote division and to further polarize and confuse. If you don’t feel that you conform to a model or attitude that has been foisted on to you as a manufactured concept. It is you who should change the complexity and multifaceted human that you are as you. How can this be good. The premise and model this is based on is that of a greater polarization of gender and not at all inclusive or a liberation from constructs and doctrine of gender I.M.H.O.
    To feel so at odds with yourself and to feel it is you who must be born as wrong and not the construct of a narrowed society that is to blame. A fault or flaw of nature that will require intervention surgical correction and {coincidentally} hormone treatment for life to correct. How does this become an act of freedom or liberation of gender constructs or an embrace of equality of gender to lose our fluidity and ability to explore our sexuality and be enriched by it. An acceptance of a complex self expression to experiment to subvert and to play and from this gain greater understanding and insight of the world. These are the things that bind us all as humans beyond gender. It is these things we need to work at, define and debate. Not this shutting down each other because we disagree. Not more division, misconception and certainly not more forced conformity.

    14
    3
    • Stonky says

      I’m afraid your post was far too long, and I switched to skim-reading after the first paragraph. But this:
      “The need and desire for women to cut and mutilate their bodies as soon as is legally possible to live up to and embrace some cartoon porn caricature of womanhood is quite depressing…”

      Is there a shred of actual evidence that the main driver of girls’ tendency to cut and mutilate their bodies is ‘porn caricatures’ rather than, say, the fashion/cosmetics industry – which appears (quite literally) to have no other function than to present women with unrealistic body images, make them feel inadequate, and dupe them into buying stuff they don’t need?

      I could walk into a store and pick up any one of dozens of women’s magazines whose every page is laden with women possessed of body images unrealistic to the point of being bizarre. How does ‘porn’ have such a grasp on women’s minds, while all of this stuff apparently has no effect? Or might it be the case that middle-class Guardianista-type feminists prefer to steer clear of this rather inconvenient line of enquiry, and pretend that “it’s all because of porn yah” because they actually love their bit fashion and cosmetics? (It used to be the 10th most important thing in the world, according to the Guardian’s scroll-bar. Now it’s a subset of the fifth most important thing in the world.)

      • Stonky says

        Just for clarity, let me emphasise that I don’t want to seem to be accusing you of being a “middle-class Guardianista-type feminist”. But these types do seem to be very much in the forefront of driving this debate, and certainly very much to the forefront of the argument that “It’s all the fault of Page 3 (which I hate) and nothing whatsoever to do with Cosmo (which I love)…”

        • Kathy says

          Hi Stonky,
          I am so glad that you are not accusing me of being a Guardianista-type feminist” because Call me vain but I don’t think I could cope with any one holding that view of me. In response to the point you raise above. Firstly I agree my post is way to long: I do not want to single out the porn industry as solely responsible because i am in full agreement with as you succinctly state. {The fashion/cosmetics industry – which appears (quite literally) to have no other function than to present women with unrealistic body images, make them feel inadequate, and dupe them into buying stuff they don’t need?}. Yes I completely would put women’s magazines in there they are also as toxic and damaging as well as anything that puts personal appearances first. I do not subscribe to the one and call out the other. Personally I detest the likes of Cosmopolitan and its ilk and feel women would be much better off without any of them dripping there bile. In fact I feel they probably have less of a place then porn which does at least have some function in its right context. My criticism was not in itself meant as anti porn though there are probably long debates to be had on its prevalence, place and effects in society and on relationships. My main point is that it all plays into a form of body dismorphia and feelings of inadequacy that makes people seek ways to cure their pain.

      • Thomas Prentice says

        The fashion / cosmetics industry ***** IZ ****** the pron caricature industry. CONNECT de DOTZ!

    • Stonky says

      And this:
      What I find most interesting is that theories of brain difference in male and female [other then size] have been proven to be non existent yet they still persist…

      Proven? As in proven? Have any of the clever people who have succeeded in ‘proving’ this fact ever done any comparative studies on creatures like, say, bower birds?

      After all (1) bower bird brains are a lot simpler than human brains, and (2) every male bower bird in the history of bower birdery has built a bower and (3) not a single female bower bird in the history of bower birdery has ever built a bower. So it should be pretty easy to pinpoint the exact difference in their brains.

      Or maybe there isn’t one, and bower birds are just yet another example of the ubiquity and power of the patriarchy.

      Or maybe, perish the thought, common sense applies. Pretty much every single animal on the planet with a brain more complex than a fish (and lots with brains less complex) has gender-driven behaviours determined by sex. It just might be that since we’re all descended from common ancestors, humans are the same as everybody else.

      Or maybe not. Maybe we’re completely unique.

      • Kathy says

        In response to this post. I am basing my point on research of brain mapping in humans and how this has found no discernible differences between the working of the male or female brain. I do try to qualify that there are ritual and biological differences which may lead to a differing of behavior though. As for Bower birds I am not aware that all have been researched and I am sure there are undoubtedly differing degrees of ritual and some level of cross over. Having grown up as a country girl surrounded by and deeply interested by animals. I have observed first hand all sorts of variants which break stereotypical behavior pasterns. I don’t think it is a power of the patriarchy thing for bower birds to make beautiful bowers for their mates. But maybe it is love!..

        • Thomas Prentice says

          WHO CARES for crissakes. THE PROBLEM IZ CAPITALISM! THE PROBLEM IZ EMPIRE! THE PROBLEM IS CLASS! THE PROBLEM IS WAR! THE PROBLEM IS wall street AND the city of London. Hello!

          • Kathy says

            The problem is keeping us all debating problems. In the end we either break free from it all and hold our own council and focus on our own path. Or we try to change the pathway. But how to do this without blood shed.
            So we sit under the tree,
            and we dream we are free.

          • Gezzah Potts says

            Thomas Prentice: absolutely correct. The ruling elites are laughing (all the way to the bank) seeing all the divisiveness and heated arguments about pathetic, absolutely meaningless bumfluff about cisgender whatsit and binary thingy and neutral pronouns and fecken toilets for fecks sakes. Meantime the blood sucking vampires keep sucking us dry, and Imperialism continues its very bloody march. The problem has always been Capitalism. How many human beings will die today because of ‘the system’?

          • BigB says

            Frank

            Currently, scientists can’t quantify how much an individual has male- or female-like patterns of brain connectivity. Another lingering question is whether the structural differences result in differences in brain function, or whether differences in function result in structural changes.

            Bigger imaging studies and imaginative animal research now in the works promise to reveal much more about humanity’s inherent — although by no means uniform, and often not substantial — sex-associated cognitive differences and vulnerability to diseases.

            Trying to assign exact percentages to the relative contributions of “culture” versus “biology” to the behavior of free-living human individuals in a complex social environment is tough at best. Halpern offers a succinct assessment: “The role of culture is not zero. The role of biology is not zero.”

            One quote from each of your links: so Kathy is right then?

            Also, cognitive science is moving away from the mechanistic neural correlates of behaviour to a nonlocal, massive distributed processing ‘whole brain’ approach. See the work of Varela and Maturana, for instance.

      • Kathy says

        Stonky,
        The research carried out in the mapping of the male and female brain showed there to be no determinable differences to be found in the way they function. I do I think balance this observation by suggesting that biological and ritual differences do occur but these are based more on the practicalities of reproduction and rituals surrounding these biological differences and not on the way the brain works . Having grown up as a country girl surrounded by and greatly interested in animals I have noticed all sorts of different behavior patterns these appear to be based more on temperament then on gender. I think these observations suggest that both male and female behavior is not rigidly defined but this surely does not undermine respect for either gender. Neither does it dismiss the fact that biologically they are different either. As for the Bower bird I am sure there may well be variants and crossovers of behavior to be found. I am not aware of research having covered all of the birds in the world observed 24/7 Maybe you are more aware of this research then I am. But to build a bower for your mate is a beautiful ritualistic act and one which is quite possibly born out as ritual to show love. I am not sure there for how to respond to your comment about the patriarchy. Do you think a similar comment should be made of the female bower bird and the matriarchy. Sexuality is complex but it is equally complex for both male and female and in the end human, bower bird or fish and regardless of brain size it is about a sharing of life.

        • Kathy says

          Sorry about post similar to reply to Stonky above. I thought comment had been lost so I posted again. Hay Ho.

        • Stonky says

          Thanks for your civil replies to my somewhat confrontational posts. I sometimes need reminding that “Stonky, I don’t think we’re in Comments are Feared and Facts are Skeered any more…”

          It seems like we agree on a lot of stuff. For what it’s worth I observe that gender-driven behaviour is remarkably fluid in humans compared with many animals, where the roles are strictly and rigidly defined (I don’t think you really and honestly believe that there is ‘some crossover’ in terms of bower birds, do you?). But to pretend that there aren’t any differences at all between men and women – as Guardianista feminism seems determined to do – is just putting dogma ahead of common sense and science.

          The fact that neuroscientist can’t identify any differences between the make and the female brain doesn’t mean there aren’t any innate differences between men and women – it just means that neuroscientists are looking for the wrong thing in the wrong place, or they’re the wrong people to be doing the looking in the first place.

          One interesting facet of the problem is that Darwinism is very good at explaining physical evolution, and very poor at explaining the evolution of social behaviours. I mean seriously, what conceivable evolutionary advantage does building a bower confer? Surely if you’re looking for a strong healthy mate, the last partner you’re going to choose is that dweeb wasting his time building a bower, when he could be doing something useful like looking for food? (That would be like all the women in the world converging on their local trainspotters and championing them as the alpha males…)

          So according to Darwinism, the dweebs whose genetic mutation leads them to start building bowers should be the first strain to die out.

          • Kathy says

            Stonky thank you for your response.
            Yes relax I believe us to be in a comment is expansive and facts as they say are sacred country here.
            I have to say. I have some serious issues with Darwinism. As you highlight in your comment it brings several issues and anomalies to the fore. Altruism and mutual respect in coexistence being but two.. The clinical nature of evolution based on the survival of the fittest is for my mind really part of the arrogant human condition[ing] and was highlighted and championed at a time when the state required this as a narrative. It was as I am sure you are also aware. Not Darwin who first suggested it but it was his work that formed the bases for the dogmatic evolutionary theory we have today. But hay as per its the ones who mirror the state that gets the prizes.In the end it is still only a theory and so therefore in my opinion should be considered as such and questioned at every opportunity. Like most theories there is a lot of wish fulfilling dogmatism.The model is in the end based on a preconceived belief system and there are plenty of holes and missing links of information. Certainly enough to question. Having never spent time studying the Bower bird I can not confirm or deny any crossover but I have observed other birds and animals extensively and in my observations there are always variables in behavior to be found. I see no reason to assume that Bower birds may be more rigid. Interestingly your comments imply that you are ensconced in your belief that it is the strong male who takes the mate. This is obviously your prerogative but for me this is not a fact. I do think we are being conditioned more and more in this direction though. Interestingly I find animal behavior is linked to environment and where food is in abundance and where there is little threat or danger. They are far more altruistic towards others. This suggests circumstance to be of more significance then biology or gender. This for me is how the system conditions the people via selfish dog eat dog capitalism. And how its media portray body image etc. As far as I am aware most of the research carried out to determine gene spread suggests that when alpha males are fighting each other. The females get off with the kinder and less aggressive males. So if people were not being preconditioned to want the fittest and buffest mates. Would we really chose a partner who is arrogant violent and fickle over one we can trust and who is kind and compassionate. This is applicable to both genders by the way. I do wonder how much of our behavior we see is learnt and based on nurture and conditioning though.

            • Badger Down says

              Comparing humans to bower birds seems far-fetched. One need look no further than sparrows: small-to-large groups of females and males, variously related, between whom subsists a lofty intelligence. They have a sense of curiosity and seek business opportunities. Yes, they squabble.

            • Kathy, just to satisfy my curiosity, have you read Kropotkin on Cooperation as a driving force in Evolution? Because you sound as though you had.

              From what you say, I think that if I were a female bower bird and worried about provision of shelter and warmth for my prospective eggs, I would regard Ideal Home design as a sign of serious commitment. “You mean you did all this ,just for me and our chicks? Oh! How happy we shall be.”

  9. kevin morris says

    A short video lecture ‘The terrible fruad of transgender medicine’ on the background to the issue of gender reassignment and how the movement has managed to remove free speech speech from those wishing to draw attention to the lack of scientific rigour in claims it makes ,can be found here:

    7
    1
    • Thomas Prentice says

      There IS a fraud of “transgender medicine” … but this creepy sex-phobic old man doesn’t have a grip on it. I turned it off after the doc introduced his “three musketeers’ whose interest in sex, it seems, is an automatic indictment of their findings. Guilt of (terrible interest in sex) association. Of course, America is and always HAS been a Puritan nation, best understood as a church or even as a congregation, not a national entity.

      • frank says

        This presentation (and many others to be found on the same channel) was organized by a christian organization. Never the less a lot of what has been said by this and some other speakers is hair raising. But you do need to be able to get past the religious slant, it does not mean that everything they say is wrong. Especially this talk by Quentin Van Meter (MD, FCP is a pediatric endocrinologist).

  10. Peter Charles says

    I became certain a long time ago that the people who promote these stupidities are quietly sniggering to themselves at just how gullible people are to believe this tripe. I have also come to believe that they compete among themselves to see who can get the most risible and outlandish ideas for people and institutions to fall for.

    13
    • milosevic says

      Academic Grievance Studies and the Corruption of Scholarship — by James Lindsay, Peter Boghossian and Helen Pluckrose

      Something has gone wrong in the university—especially in certain fields within the humanities. Scholarship based less upon finding truth and more upon attending to social grievances has become firmly established, if not fully dominant, within these fields, and their scholars increasingly bully students, administrators, and other departments into adhering to their worldview. This worldview is not scientific, and it is not rigorous. For many, this problem has been growing increasingly obvious, but strong evidence has been lacking. For this reason, the three of us just spent a year working inside the scholarship we see as an intrinsic part of this problem.

      We spent that time writing academic papers and publishing them in respected peer-reviewed journals associated with fields of scholarship loosely known as “cultural studies” or “identity studies” (for example, gender studies) or “critical theory” because it is rooted in that postmodern brand of “theory” which arose in the late sixties. As a result of this work, we have come to call these fields “grievance studies” in shorthand because of their common goal of problematizing aspects of culture in minute detail in order to attempt diagnoses of power imbalances and oppression rooted in identity.

      We undertook this project to study, understand, and expose the reality of grievance studies, which is corrupting academic research. Because open, good-faith conversation around topics of identity such as gender, race, and sexuality (and the scholarship that works with them) is nearly impossible, our aim has been to reboot these conversations. We hope this will give people—especially those who believe in liberalism, progress, modernity, open inquiry, and social justice—a clear reason to look at the identitarian madness coming out of the academic and activist left and say, “No, I will not go along with that. You do not speak for me.”

      • Thomas Prentice says

        The term “Grievance Studies” is a useful addition to the vocabulary.

        However, the problem is CAPITALISM and WALL STREET and WAR and EMPIRE and CITY OF LONDON and MEDIA and CLASS — which both these people AND the dog-park article-accepting journal and reviewers manage to miss entirely.

        Each has a swing … and a miss.

  11. Frankly Speaking says

    Dangerous totalitarian nonsense. Jordan Peterson is spot on.

    11
    3
  12. DunGroanin says

    Academia, like religious institutions and MSM and the Security forces, is a platform from which the warmongering global robber barons control the masses, mainly by the divide and rule principle, much less blood in the streets, until they actually start breaking heads.

    This Identity Politics is not rooted in longterm persecution and natural justice and equality – it is wholly manufactured and a top-down policy whizz – aimed directly at hoi polloi, it won’t be long before Labour politicians will be goaded into ‘supporting’ it – hence turning of many ‘normal’ voters off from some government that wants to turn their children into ‘poofs and deviants’.

    Look out for the ‘centrists Blairites’ rushing to back it – knowing the damage it will do. And obviously the rightist will claim it is all the fault of the namby pamby socialist PC studenty types.

    In short it is a tracer shot in the barrage of the coming election.

    11
    1
    • kevin morris says

      I’m afraid I disagree with you. Like many crazy ideas, this one came from the left. It stems from the idea that there is no such thing in humans as inherent traits, but that all behaviour is acquired and socially conditioned. Back in the seventies this was becoming the dominant theory that explained how people, being totally malleable could become whatever decision makers wished them to be, and how, come the revolution, people could be made to be free.

      It is patent nonsense of course, but the idea still underlies a great deal of behaviourist psychology and socialist critique. It certainly underlies a good deal of the thinking that underlies much of the ‘me too’ thinking. However, it is much more deeply embedded in society now as those calling out the threat are warning.

      For the BBC, most politicians and many schools and other institutions have already backed it. Tonight, and searching for internet references to Dr Quentin van Meter, an eminent American pediatrician who criticises the concept of gender disphoria, is described on one website as being a purveyor of hate speech. When he spoke in Australia recently, he was met by calls for his banning. Although van Meter is qualified to criticise the concept of gender reassignment as lacking in scientific rigour, the concept has almost reached a position where it has become unassailable. Irony of ironies, it is the religious right in America who are spearheading the fight back.

      • Makropulos says

        I disagree with your disagreement. It is never a question of “inherent traits” as something that is inalterable. Human beings have consciousness and can obviously modify their behaviour in ways that animals can’t. Humans also have a history involving traditions, habits etc. But the genuine left were always concerned with political and economic systems. The postmodernist gobbledygook that you rightly excoriate is really the product of a retreat from this genuine left and was recognised as such by the ruling class who eagerly exploited it. One of the reasons this transgender stuff has such a strong backing is that, like identity politics in general, it is something that the ruling class sees as a useful tool to divide and rule.

        • Gezzah Potts says

          Makropulos: totally totally agree with your reply to Kevin. I saw ages ago how this was a cul de sac for the Genuine Left, and it would go nowhere. I like your phrase ‘postmodernist gobbledygook’ coz that’s exactly what it is. But the one big question as you alluded too is Who benefits from all this division?

        • kevin morris says

          As I said, like many crazy ideas, this one came from the left and was inherent in the intention of the Soviets to create ‘the new Soviet man’ and in Soviet psychology as exemplified by the work of Pavlov. Given that fact alone the treatment of gender dysphoria has to be seen as falling within a materialist, essentially left wing viewpoint and can hardly be seen simply as postmodernist gobbledygook.

          Certainly, men are able to change their views and to a lesser extent their behaviours, but the question of whether mankind actually has free will remains a perennial one. As for dividing and ruling, anything that does so always benefits those who call the shots.

          • Makropulos says

            This comfortably postponed perennail question about “free will” disguises a hornet’s nest of ideological assumptions. And capitalists are every bit as materialistic as “the left” considering how they incessantly try to exploit responses and mould new modes of behaviour.

            The gender dysphoria – as I said – falls within a general failure of he Left in the political field and is symptomatic of their retreat into gobbledygook.

      • mark says

        It all originated in the Cultural Marxism of the 1930s Frankfurt School, Jewish academics who fled to the US at that time and ensconced themselves in universities in America. They seem to have been disappointed with the failures of totalitarian Bolshevism, one of the prime causes of which was that most rational human beings value family relationships, religious beliefs and cultural identity far more than political dogma. Ergo, those things – family, religion, healthy social relationships – must be broken down, leaving atomised individuals defined by their membership of a bewildering variety of competing and mutually hostile arcane sub groups. Classic divide and rule. The population can be fractured along ethnic, gender, and sexual preference lines and their activism channelled into harmless outlets, with transvestites and militant feminists slugging it out in the streets. Though the whole tawdry, degrading spectacle quickly degenerates into broad farce and can be quite entertaining, it means that what once passed for the Radical Left spends its time harmlessly obsessing over toilets for trannies, whilst the US is bombing 9 countries, civil liberties are being shredded by blanket surveillance, and the 3 top billionaires own more than the bottom 160 million of the population. Divert, distract, deceive. Bread and circuses. Ever more extreme forms of activism are championed and relentlessly promoted. Paedophilia, incest and bestiality are next in the pipeline.

        6
        1
    • Thomas Prentice says

      Labour politicians are being GOADED in a pincer movement: Bogus Anti-Semtisim charges on the one hand; “lack of compassion” and “political incorrectness” charges on the other. Who benefits? Follow the money.

  13. David Eire says

    The policy as you describe it is certainly an attack on reason and common sense; but I dont see how the policy is an attack on academic freedom.

    • David, academic freedom _is_ Reason and (usually) Common Sense. The first Academy was set up by Plato, a man who was Reason Personified.

      “Plato and Common Sense do not mix easily” — Bertrand Russel. That is because Reason is subtler than Common Sense; where they clash (as in the Sun “obviously” going round the Earth but In Reality not), Common Sense needs to change. Academics need Freedom to protect Reason until the new Reality has become the new Common Sense.

  14. I self-identify as God.
    You must respect my identity.
    I proclaim that there are only two genders.
    Thou shalt stick that in thy pipe and smoketh it.

    23
  15. Thomas Prentice says

    Astonishing how this Oxford policy is a distorted funhouse mirror image of the distorted funhouse mirror image of PRO-LIFE DOCTRINE AND DOGMA that ‘life begins at conception and not birth.’

    These are BOTH FAITH-BASED ASSERTIONS – RIGID, CLOSED, DOCTRINAIRE BELIEF SYSTEMS ENFORCED BY AUTHORITY.

    The SCIENTIFIC METHOD has been THROWN OUT — or rather “assigned” to the rubbish bin at Oxford.

    Queer Studies is a fraud. An appropriate academic role exists for the studies of SEX, GENDER and PATRIARCHY — in addition to WOMEN’S STUDIES — but Queer Studies is, well, SUCKING for breath as anything legitimate at all.

    When I looked into queer Studies in grad school in the 1990s , I found, to quote Gertrude Stein about Oakland, “there was no there, there.” I am agog that this sheer absurdity has legs, especially given the absolutely self-contradictory density and meaninglessness of the prose hacked out by these Queer Studies hacks.

    A bunch of bourgeois homosexual academics who could succeed in NOTHING ELSSE in the academy or the wider society (h/t George Bernard Shaw) stole the term “Queer” from street activists who used it tactically in the 1990s to fight back against homohating bigots. It presumably gives these preening queer studies academics precisely the same source of misplaced “sitting-on-ass-typing-words = action” delusion as “The ResistanceTM.” One does not hear of “Kike Studies” or “Spic Studies” or “Towel-Head Studies … or ‘Bitch Studies” or “Nigger Studies” now does one? Yet this Queer Studies is embraced in the Academia of the Anglosphere with a “straight” face.

    It used to be that artistic works of breathtaking insight and beauty were produced by individual homo sapiens sapiens many of whom were male and female homosexuals or bisexuals.

    QUESTION: How has it come to be that Queer Studies and the Early Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria (the transgender blitzkrieg) has the power to have such a chokehold on discourse.

    I do not have an answer.

    But upon watching the Al Jazeera investigative series The Lobby – UK, I was struck dumb by the parallels and coincidences between the strategic and tactical similarities among Queer Studies, the Transgender Juggernaut and the general Political Correctness Police State Apparatus on campus and in the media with the Israeli “meddling” and “poisoning” of UK policy. (And US policy in the censored US version.)
    See “The lobby UK” at https://www.aljazeera.com/investigations/thelobby/

    Particularly of note are the use of “shaming” and “guilt-tripping” to shut down any simple questions let alone debate. With Israel, it is with charges of “anti-Semitism” and drowning out ordinary people with imperious declarations of faithful adherence to a two-state solution.

    With the Queer, Transgender, and Political Correctness Police State Apparatus, it is with charges that to merely ask questions or challenge the approved narrative is to display a lack of “compassion.”

    Check out episodes two and three of the Al-Jazeera UK series to see an ordinary woman on her first experience at a Labour Party Conference merely asking ISRAEL SUPPORETRS AT A BOOTH HOW a two-state solution can be accomplished and being shamed and drowned out with a charge of anti-Semitism and imperious declarations of faithful adherence to a two-state solution.

    AND GET THIS: THE PRO-ISRAELI CROWD THEN FILED ANTI-SEMITISM CHARGES AGAINST THIS WOMAN! AND THE LABOUR PARTY INVESTIGATED! ACTUALLY INVESTIGATED! Go on, watch it, I dare you.

    This all may be the final sign of the looming apocalypse by the final triumph of fear and belief over reason and logic and the scientific method. In any case, the Israelification of the England / US Anglosphere and “Western Christian Capitalist Civilization” doesn’t even have Waterloo on its maps.
    Several years ago I also noted a gusher of Tel Aviv-based gay films which surprised me much given Leviticus and all. The films were well-done except every single one of them ended like Aesop’s fables: with a subtle moral of the story. And the moral is that anything and everything Israel does is A-OK! I later say this practice termed “pinkwashing.”

    RE: “The University of Oxford declares that sex is not determined at conception but rather ‘assigned’ at birth,”

    18
    1
    • milosevic says

      upon watching the Al Jazeera investigative series The Lobby – UK, I was struck dumb by the parallels and coincidences between the strategic and tactical similarities among Queer Studies, the Transgender Juggernaut and the general Political Correctness Police State Apparatus on campus and in the media with the Israeli “meddling” and “poisoning” of UK policy.

      see the following article for suggestions as to how some coincidences may be somewhat less than coincidental:

      Andrew Joyce — “Modify the Standards of the In-group” — On Jews and Mass Communications

      also here:

      Gilad Atzmon — Jewish Politics in America — A Post Political View

      In my recent book, Being in Time — A Post Political Manifesto, I point out that while the old, good Left tried to unite us by insisting that it was not important whether one was Black, a Woman, a Muslim, a Jew or Gay; in the class war, we were all united against capitalism. It was the new Left that taught us to speak ‘as a’: as a Jew, as a Gay, as a Black and so on. Instead of being one people united in the struggle for justice and equality, within the post political realm we are pulled into endless identity battles.

      Seemingly, this Identitarian revolution has been inspired by a few Jewish ideological and philosophical schools including, most importantly, the Frankfurt School. Truth must be said, when it comes to ID politics, Diaspora Jewish ideologists are often slightly more advanced than others, not because Jews are more clever than anyone else but simply because Jews have engaged in identity politics far longer than anyone else. While Gay identity politics is about four decades old and Feminism is maybe a century old, Jewish identity politics started in Babylon two and a half millennia ago. In fact, Judaism can be realised as an exilic Identitarian project. It deliberately and carefully sustains Jewish cultural, spiritual and physical segregation. Although Jews often drop their religion and dispose of God, many cling to Jewishness. For one reason or another, Jews often choose to operate within Jews-only political cells such as Jewish Voice for Peace, Jewish Voice for Labour and so on. These Jewish bodies tend to preach inclusiveness while practicing exclusivity.

      So it is hardly surprising that Jewish Identitarian philosophy and Jewish Identitarian success provides the model that inspires most, if not all, Identitarian politics within the New Left milieu in general and the current Democratic Party in particular. This isn’t the place to discuss at length or in depth the reasons behind Jewish identitarian success, however, it should be mentioned that while most Identitarians are taught to celebrate victimhood, to blame others for their misfortune, Jewish Identitarianism has a subtle dynamic balance between victimhood and entitlement.

      Naturally, Jewish ideologists are at the helm of the Identitarian revolution. Maybe more well known is the fact that a chief funder of that revolution is financier George Soros and his Open Society Institute. Soros may genuinely believe in the Identitarian future: It is cosmopolitan, it is global, it defies borders and states but far more significantly, it also serves to divert attention from Wall Street and capitalist crimes: as long as Identitarians fight each other, no one bothers to fight Wall Street, Goldman Sachs and corporate tyranny. Soros didn’t invent this strategy, it has long been called ‘divide and conquer.’

      14
      • @Milosevic: “Jewish identity politics started in Babylon two and a half millennia ago. In fact, Judaism can be realised as an exilic Identitarian project. It deliberately and carefully sustains Jewish cultural, spiritual and physical segregation. Although Jews often drop their religion and dispose of God, many cling to Jewishness.”

        I got the same impression while re-reading the Bible about 20 years ago. It seemed to me that some ancient folk myths had been re-structured into a deliberate Nationalist Chauvinist framework at the time you mention: in the half century between the exile from Judea to Babylon 605 BC and the return to Judea under Persian auspices 539-526 BC. What struck me was the contrast between the tolerant multi-ethnic policy of Persian Emperors Cyrus which allowed the Children of Israel to return to their homeland, and the savage implementation of Apartheid policies by returned Hebrew Nationalists. The Book of Ruth, with its memories of Persian tolerance toward intermarriage, stands as a gentle reproof to the racial fanaticism of Nehemia and Ezra in this period. Contrary to the message of Ezra-Nehemiah, where marriages between Jewish men and non-Jewish women were broken up, Ruth teaches that foreigners who convert to Judaism can become good Jews, foreign wives can become exemplary followers of Jewish law, and there is no reason to exclude them or their offspring.

        By the way, “as a South-African by birth” I am fond of pointing out that the proper pronunciation of the Afrikaner word “Apartheid” is Apart-Hate.

        • milosevic says

          some ancient folk myths had been re-structured into a deliberate Nationalist Chauvinist framework at the time you mention: in the half century between the exile from Judea to Babylon 605 BC and the return to Judea under Persian auspices 539-526 BC.

          I didn’t write that, Gilad Atzmon did.

          Gilad Atzmon — From Esther to AIPAC

          More and more Bible scholars are now disputing the historicity of the Bible. Niels Lechme in ‘The Canaanites and Their Land’ argues that the Bible is for the most part “written after the Babylonian Exile and that those writings rework (and in large part invent) previous Israelite history so that it reflects and reiterates the experiences of those returning from the Babylonian exile.”

          In other words, being written by home-comers, the Bible incorporates some hardcore exilic ideology into an historic narrative. Very much like in the case of the early Zionist ideologist who regarded assimilation as a death threat, “The communities which aggregated under the leadership of the Yahwehist priesthood (at the time of the Babylonian exile) saw assimilation and apostasy not only as social death for themselves as Judeans but also as attempted deicide. They resolved to maintain an absolute and exclusive commitment to Yahweh who they were sure would lead them back to the land from which they had been expelled. The prescribed blood purity as a means of maintaining the borders of the national community, thus proscribed inter-marriage with those surrounding them. They also established a series of exclusivist rituals that set themselves off from their neighbours, and these not only included a surrogate form of temple worship but also a distinct calendar which ritualistically enabled them to exist in a different time frame than the communities with which they shared space. All of these diacritical devices served to mark and maintain difference, but did not prevent them from trading with and thus being able to sustain themselves amongst the Babylonians.”

          Looking into Bowman and Lechme’s spectacular reading of the Bible and the Judaic narrative as a manifestation of exilic and marginal identity may explain the fact that Jewishness flourishes in exile but rather loses its impetus once it becomes a domestic adventure. If Jewishness is indeed centred around an émigré collective survival ideology, than its follower will prosper in Exile. However, that which maintains the Jewish collective identity is fear. Similar to the case of Holocaust religion, Jewishness sets the fear of Judeocide at the core of the Jewish psyche, yet, it also offers the spiritual, ideological and pragmatic measures to deal with this fear.

  16. Makropulos says

    Can I self-identify as a multi-millionaire? Of course I’ll need the government’s help but I’m insisiting on my identity politics rights.

    17
    • milosevic says

      Sure, you’ll just need to have a Bank Account Reassignment operation, which you have an absolute right to, and publicly funded, at that.

      13
  17. Excellent article, thank you Michael Biggs. These seekers after truth/peddlers of evidence-free assertions (delete as appropriate) presumably live on the same planet as those members of various London universities’ Labour Clubs who last week condemned the Labour MP Chris Williamson as an “anti-semite.” I really do despair: I worked at a UK university until 2004 when I and two colleagues were driven out by postmodernist/identity politics obsessed staff in our school thus cleansing the department of Marxist thinkers at a stroke. From their support of the Darmstadt music movement to the current furore around gender/sex, I cannot but help agree with those who sense the hand of the deep state at work. https://labourlist.org/2018/11/labour-student-clubs-boycott-westminster-clp-over-chris-williamson-invitation/

    12
    • milosevic says

      I and two colleagues were driven out by postmodernist/identity politics obsessed staff in our school thus cleansing the department of Marxist thinkers at a stroke.

      — thus is the real purpose of Identity Politics revealed, at last.

      It’s almost like somebody planned it that way.

      What needs to be done now, is to systematically refute these a**holes’ claims that they have anything to do with what was traditionally considered to be “left-wing” politics.

      Their theory was essential to the success of the British Empire for centuries, but it long predates that. It was actually invented by the Romans: Divide et Impera.

  18. Carnyx says

    I’m actually of the opinion that Queer Theory provides some helpful insights into identity formation and subjectivity, one of these being the recognition that masculinity and femininity are not natural attributes held exclusively by male and female genders but rather a set of associated signs and roles which we perform. These signs and roles have been culturally determined through history, but are subject to change like all language.

    This provides a window for insights into our own identities, roles and feelings, this means men and women can have masculine or feminine attributes, they can use these signs as they wish instead of being trapped by them. A woman can be active, stoic and forthright when it suits her, a man can be passive and nurturing, they have have varied sexual preferences and we should let them.

    Even the Butler quote in the article above isn’t promoting transexuality, it’s simply observing that as beings men and women have complex feelings, desires and attributes and that society and our own subjectivity has attempted to control these by policing boundaries, therefore a female body socially determines the supposed attitudes and attributes of the person living in it … or else.

    I’m not sure how this was translated into promoting transexuality, that seems to completely contradict Queer Theory as I understood it. Queer theory doesn’t claim a male born subject who has feelings, tastes or attributes associated with femininity has to actually become a woman or literally is one, it instead implies he should be free to be a feminine man and accepted as that.

    I think transactivism has in fact subverted Queer Theory through dumb literalism and the Anglo-Saxon tendency to regard a useful theory as not something that provides interesting insights, but one that must have practical applications. The elite then promote it as a distraction, and because it makes then look liberationist while they rip everyone off.

    10
    1
  19. kevin morris says

    Some years ago Harris Coulter’s landmark study of vaccine damage, Vaccination, Social Violence and Criminality-the medical assault on the American brain, asserted that the pertussis vaccine was responsible for between one in twenty and one in ten of the US population being minimally brain damaged. In 2002 a WHO report asserted that a similar proportion of the entire world population of children is now mentally ill. Despite the dramatic nature of that report, our media refused to comment on the assertion. Late last week yet another report, this time a UK one, expressed concern about levels of mental illness amongst teenagers. Apart from a good deal of hand wringing and rather shallow blaming of everything from poverty to television to social media and a good many platitudes, I expect that very little will change.

    Coulter highlighted the parallels between increases of pertussis vaccination in the US from the early forties onwards and the growth of antisocial behaviour, criminality, drug and alcohol abuse and sexual deviancy. The assertion from many that autism has always existed is rubbished by Coulter’s claims that when autism appeared as a consequence of pertussis vaccination amongst the children of the well off, psychiatrists blamed their appearance on ‘refrigerator mothers’. Later work by Dr Andrew Wakefield highlighted the connection between the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and autism and although his show trial removed his license to practice medicine in the UK, in the US he has continued his work and several academics now support his research conclusions.

    Is it surprising that girls now grow up believing they are boys and boys grow up believing they are girls? Is it surprising too that there are people who without any medical evidence whatsoever support their views and promote sex change operations for children? What we are seeing is the dogma of herd immunity and the profit motive subverting human health and wellbeing. It is notable that despite the relatively free availability of counselling and of sex change operations now on the NHS and elsewhere, many of those who do change feel no better when they do as a consequence. Indeed, examples can relatively easily be found of people actually changing several times.

    There can be no doubt that his situation suits many in our increasingly dysfunctional society but it is clear to me that as a society we are looking in the wrong place for explanations.

    9
    2
  20. Brian Burgess says

    In the postmodernist world deviancy is mainstream, lies are the truth and censorship is freedom of speech. Once you clearly understand this new paradigm it explains a lot of otherwise inexplicable things. E.G. the apparent contradiction of heavy habded censorship of certain viewpoints in The Guardian’s “Comment is Free” section is easily understood from this perspective.

    20
  21. Gary Weglarz says

    Sometimes I can’t help but think that postmodernism, and the identity politics that it has spawned, seems like the perfect way both to atomize us, and destroy the last vestiges of solidarity among the 99% excluded populations of the West – as well as of course offering justification for any and all mayhem conducted by the empire as now “reality” is simply “relative.” I mean if each one of us defines our own “truth” and the new norm is that objective reality simply doesn’t exist, it should come as no surprise that the deep State gladly defines its own “truths” daily through its massive body count and endless lies and repression.

    Though I doubt the planet will last long enough in a habitable state for us to ever find out, I suspect that if we somehow are still around in 50 years we might just discover government documents that show that the CIA and other Western “intelligence” agencies funded this hot mess as part of their cultural propaganda program designed to splinter us into the very tiniest of fragments – the better to insure their total and complete control of the sad apolitical lot we have become.

    25
    • Gezzah Potts says

      Gary Weglarz: Hey Gary, an earlier reply to you seems to have got lost again, so if you get a double reply, apologies. Completely agree, and I’ve often wondered how Identity Politics came about also, tho I recognised ages ago that it would lead the radical Left down a complete dead end, with NO threat to the status quo, while the Planet continued to be pillaged for more and more profits, and the Anglo Zionist Empire continued rampaging round the World bringing much death and destruction. As a gay male of working class origin, I found the recent gay marriage ‘campaign’ in Australia a total distraction to vastly more important things, like Imperialism, the Neocon nutters in Washington, and the very real threat of nuclear war. The above article for me was a total headspin. Just kept going: What? What? What? And yeah, absolutely agree that Identity Politics has created much Disunity, when it is vitally important that we become much more Unified.

      17
      1
      • crazy conspiracy theorist says

        “and I’ve often wondered how Identity Politics came about also”

        All of this, especially the transgender stuff, fits into the Illuminati philosophy.

    • Makropulos says

      Yes. Got it in one. I’d just add that the terminology, like the increasingly pedantic redefinitions of “anti-Semitism”, is becoming so convoluted and frankly downright boring that it’s all dissolving into a mind destroying mess. And I think deliberately so.

      10
    • milosevic says

      I suspect that if we somehow are still around in 50 years we might just discover government documents that show that the CIA and other Western “intelligence” agencies funded this hot mess as part of their cultural propaganda program designed to splinter us into the very tiniest of fragments — the better to insure their total and complete control of the sad apolitical lot we have become.

      Great news! You won’t have to wait fifty years.

      • milosevic says

        exhibit (A) — Gloria Steinem is one of the primary founders of the Identity-Politics variety of “feminism”.

        exhibit (B) — Identity-Politics feminism, as with Identity Politics in general, serves to distract attention from ruling class power, and fragment and disrupt potential mass opposition to it.

        exhibit (C) — even prior to her work on Identity-Politics feminism, Gloria Steinem was already a CIA agent, running their Congress For Cultural Freedom, a covert operation to subvert and neutralize left-wing movements.

        Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, draw your own conclusions.

        A related question that might be asked, is from whence came the initial funding for Ms. Magazine, the publication that established the Identity-Politics version of feminism as the dominant variety.

        • Gary Weglarz says

          Milosevec – absolutely right on the money! Gloria is of course the perfect example of the CIA’s use of identity politics to splinter and fracture the populace. So much better for the 1% if working class women see working class men as “the problem,” and black women see black men as “the problem,” rather than women and men of all races identifying the 1% running the empire as the source of our wars, poverty, sexist & racist institutional structures, and a political system keeping it all in place owned completely by the amoral oligarchs.

          Watching identity politics continue to morph into its current ever more bizarre splintered permutations feels very much like the – “wilderness of mirrors” – the phrase that the CIA’s own James Jesus Angleton used to describe the world of “intelligence” many decades ago.

  22. Fair dinkum says

    Tossing a cat amongst the pigeons, can I posit that it might be more about narcissism than sexuality?

    21
    • kevin morris says

      There is a lot of evidence that the children who do elect for gender reassignment are very unhappy and distressed about their situation,,as are their parents. So whilst I cannot discount your assertion about narcissism entirely, it seems clear to me that the problem is more fundamental than that. After all, sexuality has always been essential for the continuation of the human species and sexual drives are utterly fundamental to the human condition. Given that fact, I would argue that what those children are manifesting is the deepest of disorders.

      The history of gender reassignment is a very unhappy one. One of the first was of a baby boy whose penis was accidentally removed during a botched circumcision. It was suggested to the boy’s family that he should be gender reassigned and treated as a girl, which the family agreed to. The boy eventually demanded that he be treated as a boy and sought a gender reassignment operation to return his penis. Some time afterwards, he committed suicide.

      Although she has been pilloried for her view Germaine Greer has insisted that despite gender reassignment operations, the individual so treated remains of the sex they were actually born with. Since many individuals who are gender reassigned still feel unhappy with their new identities and since many actually flit to and fro between sexes, there is a strong suggestion that the dogma behind sexual reassignment is itself flawed. I am reassured that in the US, groups are fighting back against the sexual reassignment dogma, and that people in the UK too are beginning to wake up to the propaganda of so called gender dysphoria too.

      In my opinion, it can’t come soon enough.

  23. mark says

    Oxford is a trail blazing pioneer in this area.
    You have to wear “sub fusc” dress to take exams and on a formal occasions.
    Black suit, black shoes, white shirt, white bow tie and gown for men.
    Black skirt, black shoes, white blouse, black cravat and gown for women.
    But you are free to trans dress in the other gender’s clothing if you want.
    Very liberal and open minded.
    I’m going to self identify as a Chinese woman next week.
    The week after that, I’m going to be a zebra.
    The following week I’m going to be a lamp post.

    26
    • Mark, when in the Home of Lost Causes you “self-identify your gender” as being Lamp Post, what sex will your Lamp Post self-identify for its subfusc: Bow-tie or Cravat?

    • rtj1211 says

      I hope you do not suffer the indignity of Boat Club drunkards seeing you as a potential recipient of a golden shower in two weeks time? They do get a bit rowdy after Head of the River races…..

    • rtj1211 says

      Lamp posts tend to attract dogs with cocked legs and drunken Boat Club worthies…..

  24. Philpot says

    This whole obsession with sexual identity is baffling. The less anybody cares about someone’s sexual orientation the more these dangerous nutters bang on about it. Do they just get tired of being ignored now, or are they simply mentally deranged?
    When I studied sociology only 25 years ago these people were classed academically under ‘deviancy’ – clearly that was accurate.

    32
    2

Please note the opinions expressed in the comments do not necessarily reflect those of the editors or of OffG as a whole