Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Jerry Coyne on Feminist Glaciology

God bless Jerry Coyne.
   He's one of the few prominent biologists who's got the guts to stand up to the PC / SJ crowd. He's also stood up to their nonsense race nominalism / race antirealism...which has gotten him vilified by some of the usual suspects.
   This feminist glaciology nonsense--unlike the race nominalism nonsense--probably doesn't have legs. But it's good to see a competent take-down of it anyway.
   The thing about this stuff is, the PC-pomo combination is basically always absurd. It's never right, because it substitutes politicized, buzzword-laden free-association for actual thought. It can't really survive in the natural sciences...but it has absolutely taken over in many of the humanities and social sciences, where so many people have a fairly anemic grasp of reality, left-wing politics is strong, and the intellectual standards are...somewhat loose... It's even become a force in philosophy...which is worrisome as hell...


Blogger The Mystic said...

"But what’s the alternative to 'perpetuating that binary,' which, after all, is really a pronounced bimodality with a low-frequency continuum between the male and female peaks? Should the program be 'Girls, Transgender Women, and Genderfluid (But Mostly Female) People on Ice?' But I digress. "

There's an excellent bit to remember. I have had soooooooo many po-mo kiddies explain to me that postmodernism is "really about deconstructing binaries inherent to Western thought," or some such dribble. I've tried with less success than Mr. Coyne here to come up with a concise refutation which demonstrates that, on the contrary, the whole "binary" deal is basically a pomo strawman machine which is, itself, more responsible for the injection of oversimplification into discourse than the average provision of Western thought (which, of course, is deemed arbitrarily, yet crucially distinct from the entirely-Western [continental European, even] phenomenon that is postmodernism).

Coyne hits a good one there. I will remember it.

4:57 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

I couldn't agree more.
In fact, this is the source of many confusions on the intellectual left; they build this straw man according to which all real differences must be black and white, yes or no, 1 or 0. Nature just isn't like that. Natural kinds are clusters of properties that tend to fade into each other in the way Coyne says.

That's the big mistake that motivates race nominalism.

Or, well...maybe none of these motivate the errors...they just help them *rationalize* them...

5:15 PM  

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