sunrise over swamps

sunset over melancholy seas

Essentialism vs. Social Construction Theory

fikalo:

I encountered a hefty dose of gender essentialism today. It’s late and I won’t go into detail about it. But the very notion that all men and all women are exactly this or that and never, say, wildly complex and human and diverse, really is a notion that ought to be thrown out in light of more modern research.

Here’s a nice summary.

Originally posted on Intro to Women's Studies S12: Gender in a Transnational World:

In class we began by looking at different definitions of topics such as gender and how we would approach such topics over the course of the semester. We discussed topics such as “western science and its role in constructing categories of difference.” The general consensus seemed to be that science is considered factual and unbiased so people will therefore heavily rely on this information and use it to make their own judgments about certain topics. “But science has a history. People produce ideas and methods for science based on their sense of what is needed and important for their society. None of these ideas is neutral. The categories that science creates are often seen as truths that cannot be challenged” (Kaplan and Grewal 1). So far we have read excerpts from different books that talk about science and different theories and how this has affected our view on topics such…

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Bookshelf: Currently Reading

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Soil and Sacrament: A spiritual memoir of food and faith (2013). Fred Bahnson. New York: Simon & Schuster.

I started reading this book today and I am so, so glad it’s come into my life. In a well-timed fluke, last night I watched the documentary Symphony of the Soil – and I highly recommend it. It’s an absolute must-watch for people interested in the connections between ecology and agriculture.

This book, Soil and Sacrament, follows the personal spiritual journey of a Methodist pastor who travels to different faith and ethnic communities (Catholic, Protestant, Pentecostal and Jewish) where growing food and tending the Earth are central to spirituality.

The book is just beautiful, so far. Christendom desperately needs to take seriously the concerns of the environmentalist movements if we are ever to fulfil the mandates to tend God’s garden and to feed the hungry. It’s a relief and inspiration to read this book. And there’s lots of practical gardening advice woven through the text.

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Bookshelf: Currently Reading

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BattleAxe by Sara Douglass (1995). Sydney: Voyager.

I’m currently sitting on page 314 out of 576. The more I read, the more absorbed I become in the amazing story.

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