Page 16 | Judith Butler interview

(415 Posts)
MotherofPearl Tue 07-Sep-21 12:27:13

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2021/sep/07/judith-butler-interview-gender?CMP=ShareiOSAppOther

Apologies if this has already been posted. I found this troubling to read. Am I misreading this or is Butler saying that GC feminism is fascist?

OP’s posts: |
Ereshkigalangcleg Fri 10-Sep-21 13:53:01

Do they think that expansion will cut any mustard with TRAs and their allies?

dyslek Fri 10-Sep-21 13:59:06

The thing is that there are going to be many many more WiSpa's. Unless you have experianced how obsessive sex offenders can be, its hard to explain just how obsessive these men are. Its compulsive behaviour, they literally cant stop themselvs.
So as this movement rolls out accross society, and word gets out within certain communities even more than it already has, things are going to get properly crazy. So crazy that it wont be able to be covered up, the general population are going to notice and then go wtf when they find out about the idology behind it.
That the conundrum isent it; you want to force radical change on society by stealth. If you plans go well, people start to notice.

FloralBunting Fri 10-Sep-21 15:29:40

That reddit question is begging for Victoria Wood to be resurrected and turn it into a fake documentary sketch.

I can see it my mind's eye and I've honestly got stitch from laughing. The framed picture by the bed? The mispronounced German? The fact that he got so cross he stormed out and has now gone missing?? It's comedy gold.

Sophoclesthefox Fri 10-Sep-21 16:36:12

There’s a lot more laughs in here than I would have imagined being generated in a thread about Butler 🤣 genius parodies, and I am very much enjoying imagining Judy with her massive antlers poking out of her Prius, trying to get her car past her CF neighbour using the power of discursive hegemonic interpellation 🤣 then leaving a pass-agg note on the car that runs to a hundred and thirty seven pages.

Fleek Fri 10-Sep-21 20:38:26

allmywhat you've made my day with that diagram. Thank you

AlexisTse Sat 11-Sep-21 07:50:21

The best take I have seen on Butler and the recent interview and the way media has played into the transgender narrative is this piece. It wipes the floor with the Guardian and journalistic agencies that are signing on to promote falsehoods. This is also super researched. He gets at the Wi Spa incident coverage where witnesses were never contacted.
savageminds.substack.com/p/why-journalism-is-promoting-falsehoods

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Ereshkigalangcleg Sat 11-Sep-21 10:03:20

It's by Julian Vigo, she's a female academic who has done a lot of excellent writing on this issue. She has some other great articles and interviews on her substack and podcast on a variety of topics.

Floisme Sat 11-Sep-21 10:06:49

Thanks for that link Alexis - I've not read it all yet but the NUJ angle looks interesting.

I also like the point that Andy Ngo, who's derided in some circles as not being a 'real journalist', was the one who covered the story like a proper reporter, unlike those charlatans.

Freespeecher Sat 11-Sep-21 10:13:11

My takeaway from the Butler piece is there really needs to be a moratorium on the term 'fascist' as it's increasingly used for anyone who diverges from 'acceptable' beliefs in any way and thus risks losing all meaning.

FloralBunting Sat 11-Sep-21 11:19:14

I tend to not use fascist that much now, even when discussing aspects of Genderism that are identical, because it's being gutted of meaning.

I'll often use totalitarian instead, because it's more generic and less tied to a specific series of events. And to be honest, what we're seeing isn't specifically fascist in nature, it just shares some mechanisms. The same mechanisms have functioned in China, Russia, America under McCarthyism etc.

FindTheTruth Sat 23-Oct-21 11:38:29

Butler's done another article.

published just now in the guardian. sorry I can't bring myself to link to it and don't want to. perhaps someone could paste the text?

OldCrone Sat 23-Oct-21 11:43:00

Archive link to guardian article:
web.archive.org/web/20211023104137/https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/commentisfree/2021/oct/23/judith-butler-gender-ideology-backlash

FindTheTruth Sat 23-Oct-21 12:03:04

Bloody awful writing with MADE UP NONSENSE like "opponents of “gender” seek recourse to the Bible to defend their views" and "it makes no sense for “gender critical” feminists to ally with reactionary powers" and "As a fascist trend, the anti-gender movement supports ever strengthening forms of authoritarianism". DARVO. DARVO. DARVO.

InvisibleDragon Sat 23-Oct-21 12:19:31

Oh goodness that article is terrible. At least for once it is written in plain English, so you can follow the thread of illogical leaps, elisions and statements of fact that are anything but.

Indeed, gender comes to stand for, or is linked with, all kinds of imagined “infiltrations” of the national body – migrants, imports, the disruption of local economics through the effects of globalization. Thus “gender” becomes a phantom, sometimes specified as the “devil” itself, a pure force of destruction threatening God’s creation

This bears no resemblance to any GC argument I have ever heard. It is not true that "gender" is linked with arguments about migration (wtf?) or imports (wtff?). And I hardly think anyone is talking about the devil or creationism.

We generally think of sex assignment as happening once, but what if it is a complex and revisable process, reversible in time for those who have been wrongly assigned? To argue this way is not to take a position against science, but only to ask how science and law enter into the social regulation of identity. “But there are two sexes!” Generally, yes, but even the ideals of dimorphism that govern our everyday conceptions of sex are in many ways disputed by science as well as the intersex movement, which has shown how vexed and consequential sex assignment can be.
- To ask what it would mean if sex assignment is a complex, reversible process is as pointless as asking what if I had wings and could fly. I don't and I can't. Sex assignment is not generally complex and not reversible (in time or otherwise). Beyond a thought experiment, what is the purpose of asking things that are totally unrelated to material reality.
- I don't think the "Intersex movement" would appreciate being co-opted into this bilge to start with, but no, the existence of people with disorders of sexual development does not invalidate the sex binary. Not does the idea that we can look at chromosomal or hormonal or phenotypic sex - because for people without DSDs these all match. Moreover, this is entirely irrelevant to gender identity, as there is no evidence whatsoever that trans people are more likely than anyone else to have a DSD. (The Tavistock used to do karyotyping but stopped because they didn't find any evidence of DSDs)

Anti-gender movements are not just reactionary but fascist trends, the kind that support increasingly authoritarian governments. The inconsistency of their arguments and their equal opportunity approach to rhetorical strategies of the left and right, produce a confusing discourse for some, a compelling one for others. But they are typical of fascist movements that twist rationality to suit hyper-nationalist aims.
Oh magic. We're fascists again. Burn us at the stake now for wrong-think. No, I'm not a fascist because I believe in the material reality of biology. That's ridiculous. Nor do I support authoritarian movements or governments. I'm fed up with these words being bandied around to make people recoil from these dangerous ideas (that sex exists and sex matters). The rest of this is just projection.

That's just 3 paragraphs, but the whole article is just like this, with each point repeated at least once. I really really hope Jane Clare Jones gets her red pens out for this, because it's just such nonsense.

OldCrone Sat 23-Oct-21 12:46:15

She doesn't understand the feminist argument against gender. She even says: They fear that men will lose their dominant positions or become fatally diminished if we start thinking along gender lines.

It's laughable. She just makes herself look ignorant, as though she hasn't bothered to research the subject at all. She assumes that any objection to gender ideology is driven by a rightwing Christian outlook. Her blinkered view means that she hasn't considered at all why feminists would object to this ideology.

NecessaryScene Sat 23-Oct-21 12:58:23

Is she actually just stupid?

RoyalCorgi Sat 23-Oct-21 13:21:59

NecessaryScene: you have to ask that question, don't you? Has she completely misunderstood the gender-critical argument, or is she deliberately misrepresenting it? I honestly don't know.

I mean, if you look at this bit quoted above:

"Anti-gender movements are not just reactionary but fascist trends, the kind that support increasingly authoritarian governments. The inconsistency of their arguments and their equal opportunity approach to rhetorical strategies of the left and right, produce a confusing discourse for some, a compelling one for others. But they are typical of fascist movements that twist rationality to suit hyper-nationalist aims."

That is a pretty extreme accusation to make. You shouldn't accuse people of being fascists lightly. We all know that the authoritarians in this debate are those getting women banned from Twitter for wrongthink, reporting women to their employers, getting women sacked, holding masked protests to intimidate women, banning women from public platforms, and reporting women to the police.

The authoritarianism of the trans rights movement should be of profound concern to anyone who regards themselves as progressive.

On the other side, we have gender-critical feminists, who are not trying to get people banned, not holding masked protests or letting off smoke homes, freely inviting their opponents to public debate, not reporting their opponents to the police etc.

Just reading that shit, it's just a litany of lies. "Hyper-nationalist aims". What the fuck do those have to do with gender-critical feminism, for god's sake?

My own view is that she's not stupid but she is a deeply nasty piece of work. Shame on the Guardian for publishing this.

RoyalCorgi Sat 23-Oct-21 13:23:05

Oh, and also, the Guardian is doing an excellent job of pissing off its own readership. Think of all the left-wing feminists who are now waking up to what's going on. They must be leaving the paper in droves.

MondayYogurt Sat 23-Oct-21 13:37:55

They believe that children are being told to change genders, are actively recruited by gay and trans people, or pressured to declare themselves as gay in educational settings where an open discourse about gender is caricatured as a form of indoctrination.

First Judith Butler challenge: Go on r/egg_irl or 4chan right now and tell me that this isn't actually happening.

https://www.reddit.com/r/truscum/comments/qd46gw/todayonn_thankgodd_cispeoplee_stillhavee_brains/?utmsource=share&utmm_medium=mweb

Second Judith Butler challenge: talk to your detrans friends and 'uplift their voices as a white woman with considerable power.'
You don't have any detrans friends? Oh wow, guess you're more narrow minded than you think.

NecessaryScene Sat 23-Oct-21 13:42:06

Has she completely misunderstood the gender-critical argument, or is she deliberately misrepresenting it? I honestly don't know.

Whatever it is, it just seems to be the case that she's an output-only device. There's no clear evidence that she in any way perceives the outside world or reality, or if she does it doesn't matter. She just produces words.

She's like Douglas Adams' Nutri-Matic machine:

The way it functioned was very interesting. When the Drink button was pressed it made an instant but highly detailed examination of the subject's taste buds, a spectroscopic examination of the subject's metabolism and then sent tiny experimental signals down the neural pathways to the taste centers of the subject's brain to see what was likely to go down well. However, no one knew quite why it did this because it invariably delivered a cupful of liquid that was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

As I recall, Arthur managed to nearly doom the ship by trying to get the machine to produce some actual tea. I wonder what happens if you try to get Butler to actually address some real arguments or actually tackle the rights conflict.

Sleeplessem Sat 23-Oct-21 13:45:20

dolorsit

JB firmly believed and argued that gender is a construction. When it slowly emerged that the John/Jane Doe psychological experiment was not only unethical, but falsified and actually abusive JB did a u-turn.

However Butlers work is so obfuscatory that her previous work could be interpreted as arguing that gender is innate, hence JB has always opposed the concept that gender is a construct...

Her work is an excellent example of "classism" in that if you disagree you are not clever enough or educated enough to understand her arguments.

Completely agree re the classism thing, her arguments at least gender trouble and bodies that matter are so deeply routed in European continental philosophy that you really need almost a PhD level education to read and fully grasp the cannon of literature she’s basing her arguments on.

However. I don’t think you can read her as saying gender is innate?

foxgoosefinch Sat 23-Oct-21 13:46:48

My own view is that she's not stupid but she is a deeply nasty piece of work. Shame on the Guardian for publishing this.

Yes - sadly I have come to think she’s actually just another bad faith actor in pursuit of the flattery and ego-boost of unquestioning disciples.

RoyalCorgi Sat 23-Oct-21 13:57:01

As I recall, Arthur managed to nearly doom the ship by trying to get the machine to produce some actual tea. I wonder what happens if you try to get Butler to actually address some real arguments or actually tackle the rights conflict.

That's very funny, Necessary. I would love to see Butler share a platform with a feminist philosopher like Jane Clare Jones or Kathleen Stock to debate these issues. I suspect either of them would wipe the floor with her. Which is why she'll never do it.

FindTheTruth Sat 23-Oct-21 14:39:45

Judith Butler is trending and there are good responses
The Guardian
@guardian
Why is the idea of ‘gender’ provoking backlash the world over? | Judith Butler
twitter.com/guardian/status/1451859066482012162

DisappearingGirl Sat 23-Oct-21 14:49:22

I love this in the comments on the Guardian Twitter:

Someone asks what I think is supposed to be a rhetorical question: "what totalitarian method to protect the fundamental rights of transgender people bothers you the most?"

Someone else answers: "Limitations on free speech, compelled speech, blacklisting of personalities that refuse to accept the perspective of the movement and the general stance of "Any disagreement with our political ideas is impermissible, because we, by definition, stand for human rights"."

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