"We now know that sex is complicated enough that we have to admit nature doesn't draw the line for us between male and female, or between male and intersex and female and intersex; we actually draw that line on nature. So what we have is a sort of situation where the farther our science goes, the more we have to admit to ourselves that these categories that we thought of as stable anatomical categories that mapped very simply to stable identity categories are a lot more fuzzy than we thought." - Alice Dreger
For much of our history, our bodies have been used to separate us into categories that tell us who we are (e.g., male vs. female). However, the more that science has advanced, the more we have come to realize that the categories we created are not as clear cut as we once thought. In this TED talk ("Is Anatomy Destiny?"), Dr. Alice Dreger walks us through history and science to demonstrate that the line separating man from woman (not to mention the lines separating several other social categories) is actually pretty fuzzy.
This talk is a few years old, but it remains pretty timely given all of the discussions that have taken place in the media lately about the degree to which our anatomy defines us (e.g., in the case of transgenderism). Check it out and weigh in with your comments below.
Watch more videos on the science of sex and relationships here.
Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook (facebook.com/psychologyofsex), Twitter (@JustinLehmiller), or Reddit (reddit.com/r/psychologyofsex) to receive updates.
Image Source: 123RF.com
You Might Also Like: