Biology for Dummies or how to fall foul of twitter’s women hating algorithms.

So, I’ve been shadow banned from twitter for what appears to be two reasons. Firstly, I am banned because I have a vagina. Secondly, I am banned because I refuse to relinquish my belief in the political significance of said vagina.

Now, obviously, I can’t do much about the vagina. I was born this way.

The latter is a little more complex. I could pretend to be a liberal feminist who believes that prostitution is a service industry, and that there is very little difference between serving up teacakes and serving up tits and ass. I could pretend to believe that women and men were biologically interchangeable, and therefore oppression was not rooted in our differences, and the patriarchal exploitation of them to the advantage of men, but was actually based on our gender. This, of course, would require me to redefine my understanding of the word ‘gender’, and indeed, the word ‘oppression’.

In order to come to believe that women are oppressed because of their femininity, and not their female bodies, I would have to first believe in an in-ate femininity. Liberal feminism suggests that I, a female, that does not openly define as trans or non-binary, must be, by default, cis.

Only, I’m absolutely not cis. In order to be cis, I’d have be to be aligned with my femininity, and I’m not. In fact, this absence of alignment has got me in so much trouble over the years. My big mouth, for example, directly conflicting with a feminised woman, whose mouth is small and dainty, and above all else, shut. Except, when she’s performing oral sex for money, which is a perfectly valid way to earn a living, and absolutely no different than being an accountant.

Then, there is my flat size nines, that I use to wade in to situations and offer my opinion. In stark contrast to the feminised foot, which is smaller, higher and dances around stuff a lot, careful not to knock things over. Perhaps, having an opinion on matters trans is a perfect illustration of this. Feminised women, often simply self refereed to as cis, defer to their trans sisters on matters of gender, especially trans gender. The logic is that a biological woman lacks the lived in experience of a biological man, who thinks he’s a woman, and therefore, has no skin in the game, and no right to debate the issues. Yet, here I stand, steadfast in my right to a view on what constitutes a woman. And, I do this, with no nail varnish adorning my toes.

Another non-cis thing I do is all the household chores, even the manly ones. This week alone, I’ve emptied bins, changed light bulbs and put together a five tier bookshelf. Admittedly, my young son did most of the technical stuff, and it took nearly two hours, and I got incredibly frustrated… but, I did not manifest that annoyance in a girly fashion. In fact, I kicked the wall and swore, twice, which, when you think about it, is setting a bad example to my son, thus making me a bad mother, itself defying the feminine ideal of always being a good mother.

Truth is, I can’t help but give two fingers to society’s expectations of how I should do femininity. But, I also give those two fingers to femininity itself. What a pile of incoherent, ill conceived, constantly shifting, entirely baseless bollox it is? Being feminine doesn’t make me a woman. In reality, it mostly gets in the way of it.

I am a woman because of my biological make up. That is not to say, as patriarchy would have it, that I am not more than the sum of my parts. That is not to say, as patriarchy would have it, that I am less than the sum of my parts.

 

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7 thoughts on “Biology for Dummies or how to fall foul of twitter’s women hating algorithms.

  1. Love this!
    Especially ” My big mouth, for example, directly conflicting with a feminised woman, whose mouth is small and dainty, and above all else, shut. Except, when she’s performing oral sex for money, which is a perfectly valid way to earn a living, and absolutely no different than being an accountant.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cisgender means someone who was identified as female at birth (as I was, and as I presume you were, from other things you say about yourself in this blog post): and in the present day, now you are able to identify yourself, you still identify as female – as I do, and you do.

    So, yes, you are cisgender.

    Cisgender has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with “to be aligned with my femininity”. That’s an invention of TERFs.

    Like

    1. @EdinburghEye

      “Cisgender means someone who was identified as female at birth”

      Ah ha ha ha… No.

      Sex is observed at birth. It is a biological fact. One cannot identify in or out of one’s sex.

      “Cisgender has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with “to be aligned with my femininity”. “

      Please explain, without using the misogyny that passes as gender stereotypes, what ‘cisgender’ is? Because, I’m guessing that most women do not want to ‘identify’ with the oppressive stereotypes male dominated society has forced them into.

      “That’s an invention of TERFs.

      And ‘cisgender’ was an invention by men, meant to marginalize females and their struggles in patriarchal society.

      “So, yes, you are cisgender. “

      What if she identifies as ‘not cisgender’, then what? 🙂 We do know of the terrible ‘violence’ that is misgendering… 🙂

      So now you get to choose: do words have meanings or not? Because in my lexicon, women = adult human female. So, if we have to honour the category of ‘cisgender’ ,you have to honour the category of woman.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Please explain, without using the misogyny that passes as gender stereotypes, what ‘cisgender’ is?”

    Cisgender means – you were identified as female at birth: that is, someone looked at you when you were born and said “That’s a girl!” and wrote F on your initial paperwork: and now you are older, you still identify yourself as female.

    Your notion that it is *impossible* to identify yourself as female without “oppressive stereotypes male dominated society has forced them into” is a bit weird: you yourself in this blogpost identify yourself as female without identifying with oppressive stereotypes: I like to think I do too: indeed, I know quite a lot of women, both cisgender and transgender, who identify as female without identifying with oppressive stereotypes.

    The first use of the word “cisgender” in print is in 1994, and the person credited with this first use is Dana Leland Defosse, who as far as I know identifies as female. Crediting the invention of cisgender to a man when a woman is the first known user, is typical historical sexism, I’m afraid.

    “What if she identifies as ‘not cisgender’, then what? ”

    Well, ‘not-cisgender’ would mean transgender or nonbinary: someone who was identified as female at birth, but now he is older, identifies himself as male (or identifies themself as nonbinary). To me, it seems simpler to have words: cisgender for someone who has not transitioned (what we used to call “born woman” which I as a feminist always felt uncomfortable using: I wasn’t born a woman, I was born a baby) transgender for someone who has transitioned.

    “So now you get to choose: do words have meanings or not? Because in my lexicon, women = adult human female. ”

    Absolutely! A woman is an adult human female. How do we know if someone is female or male? We ask them. We do not assume we know based on stereotypical judgements about appearance. At least, we don’t if we are feminists. Or just polite.

    Like

  4. @EdinburghEye

    “Cisgender means – you were identified as female at birth: that is, someone looked at you when you were born and said “That’s a girl!” and wrote F on your initial paperwork: and now you are older, you still identify yourself as female.”

    Observed natal sex is not an ‘identification’. It is an concrete fact. One’s sex is not an identity, but part of the base physicality of the human condition, in most cases, one is either born distinctly male or female.

    The process of ‘identification’ has no bearing on the material reality of the situation.

    “Your notion that it is *impossible* to identify yourself as female without “oppressive stereotypes male dominated society has forced them into” is a bit weird:”

    Females are automatically treated as second class based on their sex. Sex based oppression is one of the major axis of oppression that works against females.

    Also, no one ‘identifies’ as female. You simply are, or are not based on your physiology (for the majority of the population). Individuals do not get to determine their sex, as biological sex is immutable in human beings.

    “you yourself in this blogpost identify yourself as female without identifying with oppressive stereotypes:”

    Err.. This is not my blogpost.

    Furthermore the author, in her own words says this:

    “Truth is, I can’t help but give two fingers to society’s expectations of how I should do femininity. But, I also give those two fingers to femininity itself. What a pile of incoherent, ill conceived, constantly shifting, entirely baseless bollox it is? Being feminine doesn’t make me a woman. In reality, it mostly gets in the way of it.”

    No where does she says she ‘identifies’ with being female. Rather she states material reality as quoted here:

    “I am a woman because of my biological make up.”

    It is irrelevant as to how you personally identify in society. Society will treat you as a member of that class of people you have been born into regardless of your strong personal feelings.

    “I like to think I do too: indeed, I know quite a lot of women, both cisgender and transgender, who identify as female without identifying with oppressive stereotypes.”

    Again, one is either female or not. One cannot identify into a class of people that one does not belong too. The oppressive stereotypes are not optional – they will be applied to you regardless of what you think you are.

    “Well, ‘not-cisgender’ would mean transgender or nonbinary: someone who was identified as female at birth, but now he is older, identifies himself as male (or identifies themself as nonbinary).”

    Again (again), not particularly relevant as society will read you and classify you according to the dominant stereotypes that apply.

    “How do we know if someone is female or male? We ask them.”

    No. They simply are, or are not. Humans are quite keen on recognizing members of each of the sexes. Men trying to act like women, and women trying to act like men are quite obvious and despite their acts – it does not change what they are in physical material reality.

    “We do not assume we know based on stereotypical judgements about appearance.”

    Society does. Gender theory does. Transactivists do.

    Radical feminists do not. They see the root the problem – the social construction of gender – and realize that it is a oppressive patriarchal feature of society that should be celebrated, but rather deconstructed and done away with, because its main function in society is the oppression of the female class.

    ” At least, we don’t if we are feminists. Or just polite.”

    Effective feminism names the problems and situations that stand in the way of female liberation from patriarchal society. Gender is a problem. Male violence is a problem. Lack of access to reproductive care is a problem.

    The expectation of ‘being polite’ is just one aspect of the toxic socialization that females endure as they are crushed into ‘acceptable female roles’ box. Changing society for the better and standing up for female rights, boundaries, and spaces explicitly requires women not to be polite, and going against these ingrained tendencies takes a great deal of mental energy and willpower.

    So no, feminism does not need to centre men or their feelings in feminist discourse and praxis and it most certainly not have to be ‘polite’. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @myself – correction…

      “They see the root the problem – the social construction of gender – and realize that it is a oppressive patriarchal feature of society that shouldNOT be celebrated,”

      I need an copy editor…

      Like

  5. I only realised after I wrote and posted that comment that you were a random drive-by commenter, like myself, not the author of the blogpost! And it didn’t seem worthwhile editing the comment, as I checked out your blog and it appears you, like the OP, identify as female.

    “Observed natal sex is not an ‘identification’. It is an concrete fact. One’s sex is not an identity, but part of the base physicality of the human condition, in most cases, one is either born distinctly male or female. “

    And yet, in order for someone to write either “M” or “F” (or even make the decision to leave the box blank, as one legally can in some places now in the case of an intersex infant): some person other than the infant must look at the baby, observe the baby’s “base physicality”, and identify that “base physicality”, for the most part, as either male or female. Identified female, or female, at birth is a concrete fact: the observer, the one who identifies, exists.

    Females are automatically treated as second class based on their sex. Sex based oppression is one of the major axis of oppression that works against females.

    No. Studies have been done – with babies, with young children, and by adults – that demonstrate pretty consistently that people identified as girls and women are discriminated against based on the gender they have identified as or – for infants and very young girls – the gender they have been identified as, based on how they are dressed, made up, and named. This is, if you think about it, pure common sense (though common sense should always be confirmed by solid research): no one literally checks a female employee’s naked body to confirm she doesn’t have a penis before giving her lower wages than a male employee.

    Also, no one ‘identifies’ as female.

    Rubbish. The author of this blogpost does. I do. So do you. So do (approximately) 98% of those identified as female at birth.

    The words in which the author of this blogpost identifies herself as female are:

    “I am a woman because of my biological make up.”

    Men trying to act like women, and women trying to act like men are quite obvious and despite their acts – it does not change what they are in physical material reality.

    And yet, you have undoubtedly encountered trans women, & trans men, who didn’t out themselves to you as trans, and you took for granted they were cisgender. And you have also, probably, given your stereotyped and judgemental attitude to gender-roles, encountered cis women whom you assumed were trans women, because they didn’t conform to your expectations of dress, mannerisms, or looks.

    Radical feminists do not. They see the root the problem – the social construction of gender – and realize that it is a oppressive patriarchal feature of society that should be celebrated, but rather deconstructed and done away with, because its main function in society is the oppression of the female class. </em.

    Strangely, every trans-exclusive radical feminist I ever met is, like you, sure that gender is biologically fixed, absolute, and unchangeable. They are not interested in deconstructing gender at all: for them, gender is, as you put it, a "concrete fact": they're certain, as you outline in the penultimate paragraph from your comment that I've quoted: "Men trying to act like women, and women trying to act like men are quite obvious" – it does not seem to occur to them, or to you, that this is reifying gender as a concrete and unchangeable reality.

    Like

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