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Notes from Day 7: Collecting our thoughts

Below are the notes from the questions raised by Anne to help us begin collecting and connecting our ideas.

1. How do you define gender?

  • Gender is fluid
  • Gender is a spectrum
  • gender is a continuum
  • a socially/culturally constructed representation or performance, perhaps in harmony or at odds w/one’s biological sex
  • a socially constructed and fluid representation of one’s masculinity or feminity
  • how we think of ourselves in relation to or in contrast to socially constructed “norms” for men and women
  • personal state of mind
  • a social construction of our experience as individuals
  • an english word we use to
  • a socially constructed classification for sexed bodies (minds too?)
  • more complicated than genitalia
  • genders are infinite

Social vs. individual construction

Biological vs. mental/philosophical

2. How do you define technology?

  • technology is developed by humans to assist them
  • anything invented by humans
  • something capable
  • what humans had
  • system or systems that alter our body and/or perception
  • any tool we use to define or express ourselves
  • any advancement in humanity
  • anything that makes life easier
  • catalyst
  • anything constructed
  • making something easier for humans
  • what humans had conscious thought in making

human involvement


3. What’s the relationship between them?

  • technology is a means for societal & individual repression and expression of gender
  • inextricably linked but different
  • both are programmable
  • impact each other
  • technology has
  • they use each other
  • technology offers alternate paths for gender
  • technology is wrapped up in our cultures def. of gender norms
  • symbiotic relationship
  • technology is used to more smoothly adhere to what we believe is correct for our gender

4. What do you know?

  • That a Y chromosome doesn’t make someone male
  • gender isn’t either/or
  • gender is many things to many people
  • being female is to lack a y chromosome
  • that technology is just as hard to define as gender
  • we can break the system
  • the significance of race and socioeconomic status
  • our gender and identity are separate
  • male and female are unstable
  • cosmetic surgery is a form of passing
  • gender is more contingent that I thought
  • being feminine is not to lack masculinity

5. What questions remain?

  • What is the difference between butch and trans?
  • Will technology ever make gender distinctions obsolete?
  • Does gender really exist?
  • Is everything a type of technology
  • Can technology perpetuate gender stereotypes?
  • Will we ever break the stereotypes?
  • How does one decide that they feel male or female?
  • How are different forms of passing related or not?
  • Is there a true natural selft that could/should show our gender?
  • Can gender create technology?
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  1. The Ivory Tower and the Real World | Gender and Technology Spring 2009

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