• Oh interesting do u think any psychological position that stops short of complete gender nihilism is flawed for that reason?
  • i don't want to derail the conversation too much but i feel like gender nihilism is an extremely loaded term. we're evidently a sexually dimorphic species but for me the issue comes that we use sex and by proxy gender as extremely crude approximations for the traits we're actually interested in creating distinctions for.

    for example, i think about this a lot wrt to the "controversies" about trans-women competing in women's athletic competitions. the common argument against trans-women competing in those spaces relates to talking about sexually dimorphic traits that would give those born biologically male an advantage (even though evidence of that is actually, at best, mixed). however i think the idea of breaking sports into male and female is inherently absurd. if the thing we say we care about is, for instance, things like weight, muscle-density and muscle-distribution and those things are very easily measurable in our modern context then shouldn't we construct categories around the actual things that we propose map on to sex rather than using what is just an extremely unrefined proxy for those traits? some categories will be very dominantly biologically female and some very dominantly biologically male but the categories will be created on a set of actually relevant criteria.

    i think this way of thinking is useful, and can be extended to thinking about things like gendered pronouns (which many languages don't have). if there is not value actually communicated at the end of the day by any tradition, i think we have a moral responsibility to question and deconstruct that tradition. depending on the avenue of life these traditions impact it is at best inefficient, and at worst harmful. i think this more close to what most "gender nihilists" actually believe. to me this is more similar to anarchist lines of thinking about deconstructing power structures than nihilist thinking, and i think the term "gender nihilist" is often used by people on the right to delegitimizing radical restructuring of gender dynamics.

    to be clear, i don't think you're using it in this way and i know your understanding of nihilism is much more sophisticated than most, honestly than probably mine. so i may be wrong about how the usage of nihilism applies, but i do think largely at least in the world of uninformed political rhetoric it's used to discredit the idea rather than support it
  • "do u think any psychological position that stops short of complete gender nihilism is flawed for that reason?"

    No, Not really.

  • edited May 2019
    Also wrt to Freud, it’s basically widely accepted that there is little to no scientific method to most of his theories. As a historical and philosophical point of interest, it can be fun to talk about and certainly he had influence in the beginning of psychotherapy but in the long term most of his ideas from ego, superego, id to the oedipus complex to the idea that psychological disorders are the result of some sort of subconscious repression are all to varying degrees not scientific representations of human psychology and while interesting I think reconfirm existing biases in thought about psychological pathology that are extremely harmful to many. I think perhaps his continued relevance is exactly because his ideas reinforce this bias
  • edited May 2019
    I've been reading more for pleasure--sort of forcing myself--and it has been super rewarding.

    Just in 2019 so far:

    I read True West by Sam Shepard with my wife--it makes me wish I could see a great stage adaptation of it. I'll also never view toasters the same way.

    We also read The Waverly Gallery by Kenneth Lonergan shortly thereafter--it's ran on Broadway last year with Elaine May and Michael Cera. It's a sad meditation on dementia, but it's also quite funny. Very Lonergan.

    I finished Mark Harris' Five Came Back, which I started last summer. It's a nonfiction telling of 5 Hollywood legends (Ford, Capra, Huston, Wyler, and Stevens) going to film documentaries during WWII. There is a Netflix miniseries of docs that are a great companion to this.

    Wide Sargasso Seas by Jean Rhys. I love Jane Eyre, and I love this stream-of-consciousness, post-colonial telling of Bertha Mason's life before she becomes the mad woman in the attic.

    Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, which people have been suggesting to me for years. It's a sad science-fiction adjacent coming-of-age tale that lives up to the hype.

    Right now I'm reading Zone One, a zombie novel by the great Colson Whitehead. It's not as mind-blowingly powerful as The Underground Railroad, but it is a fascinating literary version of this sort of novel. Will Barry Jenkins make this after he's done with TUGRR for Amazon? Doubt it, but I would love to see a film of this.
  • I’m referring to specifically the idea of repressed memories being central in explaining anormative behavior, which that line of thinking led to a bit of a crisis in psychotherapy and I think even still effects us with an overly narratively inclined view of psychoanalysis that focuses on the idea that there’s some simple and easily explained solution to what are complex neurophysiological and personal influences that effect behavior. Someone who is manic depressive would love to discover the hidden memory that makes them who they are, but no such memory or memories exist in issues of complex brain functionality and I think the idea that there is contributes to their stigmatization that people just need “get to the bottom of their own shit” to put it crudely.

    while the framework of distant and traumatic memories is useful in some subset of circumstances, it’s overapplication has been problematic. Admittedly it’s been a while since I read any Freud so please let me know if you think this is a mischaracterization of his view and I am vaguely aware he later adjusted some of his beliefs wrt repressed memories although I’m unclear exactly how
  • edited May 2019
    also to clarify, I wouldn’t say I’m certain that there aren’t specifically masculine or feminine psychological frameworks because that’s a tremendously difficult question to answer but I will say that much of what has been historically defined as such we now know to be culturally contingent and we also know that the psychological has correlative but not obviously causal aspects and in light of all that I think it casts a great deal of skepticism on the idea to the point that even if it were true that it seems to be insignificant enough that if we want to construct a society that maximizes individual prosperity it’s best to find other means of categorization.

    it is possible that there will still inevitably be some highly female and some highly male spaces, and purely taken in isolation that’s not necessarily a problem in and of itself, but when group identity is constructed explicitly or implicitly along those lines it will inevitably stifle those many who don’t conform to this broad and crass method of defining people
  • especially when one group has institutional power over another
  • i read "Wide Sargasso Seas" - i'm not too into Jane Eyre tho @Dallas. so the book was "middle of the road" interest-wise.

    however, I really loved (and have continued to re-read) "Remains of the Day" by Ishiguro. but i hadn't, and just forgot to, investigate other works.
    "sad science-fiction adjacent coming-of-age tale that lives up to the hype" really got my attention tho.

    i picked the book up today- thanks for the rec.
  • @ dallas
    were you teasing when you said "lives up to the hype"? also, what kind of hype?
    cuz i'm 2 chapters deep, i think the writing structure challenging.
    it's "stream of consciousness" writing that often digresses from the present to recap and refer to a off-screen event/ persons (Tommy). then jumps back with the finess of putting a Pin-in-it to bring up later

    the first chapter was oddly jarring (weird too for how short these chapters are) cuz it reads like it's been translated from "X" into British-English. the syntax of the sentences are a little weird on the read. and then, chapter two, the narrator starts using more Brit-English and syntax.

    so far, i'm like, 'what is up with this book?'
  • edited May 2019
    I thought the prose fit the sort of character Kathy was, always talking around he problem. Very circular. The book read to me like someone trying to get something off their chest (given the 1st person), but never seeing the real source of the problem herself.
  • did you enjoy reading this character?
  • Yeah--I felt bad for her, and for Tommy.
  • starting 2666 tn. may god help me
  • comin off of houellebecq’s submission which is a horribly good read.
  • i don’t think i put it down since i picked it up. houellebecq is a frustrating man to read about but a brilliant man to read
  • heard good things abt 2666 good luck out there
  • Nice! Good luck. It’s been on my shelf for so many years. I need to give it a shot myself.
  • reading it currently
  • bout 1/7th thru. we could book club it. there’s obviously no shortage of things to discuss
  • i'm in -
    and terrible with fractions!
  • yea - this book is something new.
  • yeah the love triangle is brutal
  • it is. and it's such a striking relationship (i have so many feeling about it!) - really well developed so early in the book
    i have no idea where this book is going and i'm totally not turned off by that.

    teacher mode: i love the tone -
    honestly - the interpersonal relationship of the men. fuck what - i've never read "men" like this before.

    where are you currently in the book? have you read to the taxi scene? i'm over the fucking moon about it!!!
    i'm so many feelings!
  • edited June 2019
    i love the way it's written! this. fuckin. flow.

    i'm making myself anxious - i'm hype but there's so much book left and where?
  • im in mexico after the understated 3 some
  • edited June 2019
    so -i'm probably just about to get to that part. cuz i'm in mexico ATM-
    but i was elluding to the scene on pg 74 - 77.

    we're around the same reading part.

    **Understated - true. Or graceful? With-holding, prudish? but facts -till dawn with two people. If the best sex is always in your imagination- then less is more. And it's a book actively giving the audience room to input.

  • Okay. I understand the make of this book a bit more. I wonder if "Two Gallants" could be used as a solid character foil. Or used even for a neat expansion essay of character types.
  • i might be tappin out or at least (and because of the length) i'll dabble back and forth.
    there's a lot I liked about the structure of this story. I geeked on the flow, definitely. I really liked the meta-story of a late 90s pre-modern internet and the social community of wayward intellectuals. it's interesting the speculative fiction type of telling something unseen and web-like just out of view - but then it seems that certain peripheral mysteries were set up just as vehicles for the next chapters to ease the transition of characters.

    idk tho. not diggin the maddness theme, not diggin the round robin with _____ as the center-piece
    maybe i need outside info to really get the shapes vs philosophers. Or really, i see it as counter productive.

  • i have no opinion on the book yet. too wrapped up in it. gonna finish.
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