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We do this in work elsewhere (see the links from our names, above).Rather, we wish to highlight various fallacies and misrepresentations that we’ve noticed frequently occurring in discussions of our views.There are many possible argumentative routes to a single conclusion: some good, some bad.The illegitimacy of one argument, or set of arguments, for a particular conclusion doesn’t establish the illegitimacy of every other argument for that conclusion.Biological essentialism is a position about whether certain traits of women are biologically produced by sex category membership.Womanhood itself is not a genetic ‘trait’ and no-one on either side of the dispute thinks it is conceivably biologically produced in the way that, arguably, emotional intelligence or maternal instinct is supposed to be.None of us hold a view according to which either a woman or a female is defined as such by her current possession of a particular configuration of genitalia, womb, or any other single primary sex characteristic, for that matter.
But in any case: this view has nothing to do with the view that the category of ‘woman’ is correctly defined as ‘adult human female’.
Our first section covers recurrent fallacious arguments.
In a second section, we consider and reject some analogies that have been brought against our position to date, which we consider to be poor.
So to call the view that some of us hold ‘biological essentialism’ is a misnomer.
Moreover, it is a misnomer apparently rhetorically designed to draw some of the harsh criticism which appears in progressive circles about biological essentialism, in the true sense, onto the view that women, definitionally, are adult human females.
In a final section, we add some questions which we’d like our opponents to answer in future work.