T Nation

Biology of Gender


Is gender a social construct? discuss





What did he mean by this? See highlighted by me


Would have better to start with this thread then biology of race.

Generally, accepting the biology of gender is a gateway to accepting the biology of race for many


I don’t want to speak for him, but it’s probably in reference to women wanting public funding for women only medical things (pregnancy, birth control, certain cancer screenings, etc).

Biology of gender is super super super easy to argue, due to the chromosome difference.

Biology of race requires people to put every human on the planet into a “race” category. This becomes very difficult with the intermingling of races.


Men have medical needs too. Shouldn’t that make men as eager for big government?


Men’s medical needs are considerably less costly than women’s. Women’s medical needs (in the case of birth control etc) also have a bad habit of conflicting with established religion, which makes it hard to pass if all the voters are men.

Same concept with old people having such a high % of “NO” voters on school levies. Once you don’t have kids in school, it becomes much easier to justify giving them the finger.


In part, yes.

Except for transgendered people, intersexed people, etc.

This is news to me. Any studies you can link to to support this (adjusted for lifespan, of course)?


This thread is going places…


This one should be a slam dunk. Unlike race, where the genetics and biology are, shall we say, fraught, I highly doubt anyone here will deny that genetics/biology plays at least some role in determining one’s gender. Likewise, is there anyone here who would deny that gender–what it means to be a man vs a woman–is influenced at least in part by the culture in which one is raised? Methinks gender roles are simply too variable–across both culture and time–to argue otherwise.

So while we could argue forever regarding the relative contributions of nature vs nurture in determining gender, I don’t think anyone could reasonably argue that both don’t play at least some role in its determination. (That said, reasonableness is at times in short supply, so…)


Very brief google. I’m in no way an expert on this.

Problem is when a sector of people (ie intersexed people) make up less than .1% of a population (spitball number, someone correct if they have the right one), quite frankly, nobody cares.

If a system, such as gender, can be applied to 99.9% of the global population with near pinpoint accuracy, i’m beyond comfortable calling it a day.


I didn’t use the word gender anywhere in the referenced post. My point was that women and men have different biology.

The general context of my post was that on the average women and men vote differently. That’s ultimately not highly relevant to a discussion about edge cases. There may be a small number of people for whom we’re not biologically certain of their sex. But well over 99% of people can be easily classified as either male or female.

If your question is more specific as to why I think that biology makes women’s self interest more collectivist, that is rather a straightforward question. Women are forced by biology to invest very heavily in their offspring. Collectivizing this burden is beneficial to women. Of course, it’s beneficial to men to a certain degree, but only to the extent that it increases efficiency and not in the unbounded way it is beneficial to women.


You didn’t use gender but you factored in women’s biology into their voting preferences which makes gender as a social construct bunk.

But I appreciate your answer especially the final paragraph



I basically see it this way in a nutshell

Sex = biological/chromosonal/anatomical

Gender (or I think more appropriately “gender identity”) is a social construct that the vast majority of the time falls in line with biological sex.

Certainly, gender roles are mostly social constructs.

This is another one of those discussions where what is being discussed needs to be defined and define early or 150 posts from now people will be talking about two to five entirely different things.


This is very well put, and tbh I don’t normally think of sex/gender as different systems. In a line of thinking where sex/gender are different I’m alright with this breakdown.


Neither do I, but there are cases were a man, with male parts, has two X chromosomes, looks feminine, and self-identifies as a woman. So, there is some gray area. I don’t think it’s that common, though.


That relates to my normal line of thinking about things. If a concept aptly describes 99.9% of a group of people, I’m not going to dedicate a lot of thought to it. If someone else does the thinking for me and the result makes more sense than my old thoughts, I’m not opposed to it.


A couple examples of this.



You native English speakers have it easy, since you have both the word gender and the word sex. We Norwegians have only the word “Kjoenn”, wich describes both sex (biological) and gender (social role and/or identity). My experience is that this topic often gets confused, because people often talk over each other, where one is talking about gender (learned gender specific behaviour) and the other is talking about sex (the biological differences between the sexes). It gets less frustrating discussing this topic with feminists, if one are aware that they are really talking about gender and not sex (Most feminists admit that there are biological differences between the sexes, and I assume the more sober MRAs admit that there are such a thing as learned gender behaviour, roles and Identity).


Seems like a solid study. Point taken.