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Thinks Like vs Thinks About May 15, 2012

Posted by FCM in gender roles, pop culture, rape, trans.
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trans make quite a deal about claiming that they “think like” women, or feel like women, or whatever.  this is historically speaking i mean — lately, its good enough to just say you *are* a woman with no qualification or explanation at all, but lets not forget the history here.  “thinking like” a woman has gotten a lot of play.  brain scans and whatnot allegedly proving that people “think like” other kinds of people have been very important and are still used to convince the unconvinced (or inconvincible) of the legitimacy of trans.  but whats in a brain scan?

by definition, there are certain aspects of culture that are not left in the archeological record.  as cultural artifacts, brain scans might survive history (and technology, assuming they are saving hard copies and arent all digital) but what people are thinking about is not included in a brain scan and relies on self-reports (or perhaps the controlled application of known stimuli, like gaming).  but no one ever listens to women when we tell them what concerns us, and the details of our internal lives.  indeed, many women still dont have the luxury of having an internal life that isnt consumed with the dialog of survival and constant strategizing around issues of survival as female-bodied persons under patriarchy.  many, many girls and women do not survive patriarchy at all.

so what are these men who allegedly “think like” women thinking about?  this is not a rhetorical question.  if (and its a big if) they really do think differently than other men, this alternate way of thinking is just another tool in their arsenal that can and will be used to further patriarchal interests and to achieve patriarchal ends.  thats all.  it will not be used as a way to further womens interests or to understand and remedy what female-bodied persons experience at the hands of men and male-centric institutions under patriarchy.

so regarding men who allegedly think like women, the only appropriate response is so the fuck what?  and possibly jesus.  of feminist concern is what men are thinking about, and they demonstrate the substance of their internal lives all the time: what men think about is (big surprise) accumulation (and violence).  specifically, accumulation of material wealth, sexual access to — and general exploitation of — women, and institutional and interpersonal power.  and that includes the ones who allegedly “think like” women.  they all think about the same things.  theres a reason for that.

and if there are some men who “think like” women, there are probably women who “think like” men, but what does that give us?  does thinking like a man change womens individual or collective institutional or political standing?  if a woman thinks like a man, is she likely to stop thinking about and strategizing around issues of survival as a female-bodied person under patriarchy?  does it negate the consequences to her of being born with a baby maker in a rape culture — of being female-bodied in a world where boys and men routinely stick their dicks into girls and women, and what that means?

wake me up when any man, or any trans politicker has anything interesting to say about what men and women think about, and why, and why there is obvious difference there.  until then, any alleged alternate way of thinking, when men do it, is just an alternate route to a patriarchal destination that benefits men at womens expense.  if this is expected to be their all-access ticket into the womens locker room, and it obviously is, well, lets just say that feminists disagree about the significance of the brain scan results.  or, alternatively, if they want to push the issue, and they obviously do — game on?

that they apparently didnt see this coming is unsurprising, considering their utter disregard for the substance or existence of womens internal selves and lives, and the details of womens internal dialog — what we think about — which 100% of the time, at whatever level, includes processing the details of our environment, in order to avoid rape.