What is the most embarrassing straw man you've ever read by a philosopher?

You're faking! You're very good, or I would have caught you sooner!

This is a gross oversimplification of what all of these fields have to say.

The fact that it's not a detailed description doesn't mean it's not true. Were you expecting a book length description in a redditt comment? That's silly. I cited two texts that confirm my assertions.

Since you haven't supported this point via argument I feel like it's appropriate to assume you can't support it.

I did support it. By citing two popular textbooks, and quoting an encyclopedia.

Also, there is a voluminous literature from philosophy, literary studies, cultural studies, anthropology, history, sociology, and so on that finds Post-structuralism to be a useful critical tool.

That doesn't mean any of the conclusions are well reasoned or well supported. Or correct. There is a voluminous literature underpinning homeopathy and tarot. But, like feminist scholarship, they are kooky and wrong.

What is the criteria for useful?

A system for discovering the answers to questions is useful if it yields answers and the answers are correct.

What is the criteria for correct?

According to feminists, whatever a feminist feels is correct is correct. According to tarot card crooks, whatever the crook says is correct.

What is the manner in which we generate a hypothesis or discriminate among theories?

Feminists don't generate hypothesis or theories. These are empirical concepts. Feminists misappropriate the terms to trick readers into thinking their conclusions are correct. A hypothesis is based on evidence, and is falsifiable. What feminist "hypothesis" can falsify the existence of patriarchy? Given your expertise, it should be easy for your to find innumerable examples. If they exist. But you can't. Because they don't. A hypothesis does not have a pre-determined outcome. But feminist "hypotheses" always do. They always, from inception, and without testing, prove the existence of patriarchy.

Likewise, theories are falsifiable and arise from many branches of evidence, rather than a single foundation. Feminism fails both of these tests. No feminist "theory" can disprove the existence of patriarchy. None is grounded in a strand of evidence that does not presume the existence of patriarchy. Feminism fails to predict observable phenomena. Which is why you resort to shaming skeptics and dismissing contradictory evidence as "personal issues." Evidence in support of a theory must be vast. And contradictory evidence must be small. Feminism fails at both of these tests. Which is why the best thing you can say about it is "it's useful". You can't say it's correct.

In this sense, post-structuralism functions as a meta-discourse; however, a basic look at critical theory will provide you with more than your fill of empirical data.

I agree that post structuralism functions as a meta discourse. Likewise Christianity. But it's still ridiculous and in-scientific to say that Noah lived 300 years and put two of all the toads and frogs of South America in his 100,000 square foot boat for a year. And the subjects of feminist discourse are equally ridiculous and un-scientific no matter how broad the discourse. Your defense here is that feminism is correct and compatible with science because it talks about a lot of stuff. That's lame.

Even more lame is critical theory. Critical theory only exists in relation to the thing it criticizes. If there is no patriarchy, there is no critical theory. In order to subscribe to critical theory, one must assume a priori that patriarchy exists. That's the opposite of science. Science doesn't assume. It attempts to falsify. Could I have a list of critical theorists that attempt to falsify the existence of patriarchy, please? Didn't think so.

Which feminists take patriarchy to be a priori?

All of them. It's a requirement. Don't believe me? Okay, give me a list of substantial post structuralists that say there is no gender inequity. You're an expert. This should be easy.

Patriarchy is discovered a posteriori via empirical investigation of a particular culture.

No it's not. Patriarchy is assumed to exist in all cultures, and contradictory evidence is dismissed. Otherwise, there would be nothing to criticize, and no critical theory. If men possess considerably more capital, that's an example of patriarchy. Men are powerful. Women are abused. If women possess considerably more capital, that's an example of patriarchy. Women are burdened, the male leisure class lives off the sweat of women. There was a time in the US when men earned more money than women for the work they did. Critical theorists call this patriarchy and assert that powerful men abused weak women. Now women receive more compensation than men for the work they do. Critical theorists also call this patriarchy and assert that powerful men abuse weak women. Patriarchy is not "discovered" based on evidence. It is assumed a priori. All contradictory evidence is obscured, dismissed, or insulted.

You should read Roland Barthes' essay "The Death of the Author".

Okay, you read the first of the textbooks I cited, and I'll read Barthes.

I didn't see a source from the website you copied it from ... which is a bad way to go about criticizing a position).

The author's meaning is secondary in the sense that the author as Author, a subject outside of time, space, language, does not exist.

I get it. Feminist authors don't exist. Scientists exist. Their observations exist. Their experiments exist. And they mean what they mean no matter who reads about them, and even if nobody reads about them.

The reader then, as a member of the discursive community of the author, is on similar epistemic standing in regards to interpretation as the author.

I get it. Within feminism, a thing is true only to the extent that a reader feels that it's true because he is on similar epistemic standing in regards to the feelings of the author.

It's a liberation of interpretation from totalitarianism.

I agree. But science is very totalitarian and does not permit liberal interpretation. That's why feminism is unscientific.

Post-structuralists are not necessarily committed to relativism about interpretation.

Externally, they are. But internally, post structuralists do not tolerate any dissent! They marginalize dissenters and attack them by saying they have "personal issues" if they disagree, and imply that anyone who disagrees is mentally ill, like you did with your psychiatrist comment.

Pluralism simply states that there are multiple, good interpretations of a given text.

I know! Because there are multiple feelings about a given text. And they are all correct, unless they challenge the underlying dogma. One feminist might say that men oppress women because they are inherently morally defective. And she's right! Another person might interpret the same text to mean that men oppress women because biologically pre-destined to do so. We have a place in the feminist tent for her. But when I challenged your underlying assumption that women are weak, when I implied there is no reason to accept that conclusion, it wasn't a good feminist interpretation, no matter the evidence. Which necessarily means the outcome is predetermined. That's anti-science, and illustrates why feminists have created the straw man that science is patriarchal oppression- it proves them wrong!

That doesn't imply interpretive anarchy.

I know! If you agree, it's relativism. If you disagree, it's mental illness and anarchy.

What is the idea of a "fact"? How do we recognize them?

This discussion centers on empiricism. Do you really need me to explain the scientific method to you? You didn't learn that in seventh grade? You can't google it?

One could point to some psychoanalytic trauma (the fall into language) or the increasing specialization/division of labor.

One could claim that Freud is based on falsifiable experiments. Feminists do. But here is the secret. The reason feminism gets wet over Freud is that it's NOT falsifiable. I realize that you can say that patriarchy is the result of specialization of labor. Your assuming it's existence. A priori. How can division of labor falsify its existence? A scientist could explain this. No feminist ever has. Because feminism is at inception anti-science. It's not allowed.

Patriarchy is, in a sense, fictional insofar as it is a cultural construct

There you go again! In order to say patriarchy is a cultural construct, you had to assume it exists! You are a fine example that well illustrates my point. You are proof of everything I said.

It is not an inherent feature of the world; it's something created via the social practices of human beings.

Again! This means that it's possible for patriarchy to disappear. In order to believe that, we have to assume it exists. And such assumptions are unscientific.

The world feel isn't in the quote.

The meaning is in the quote.

What the quote refers to is that there is always more to say about a text.

Nope. What it means is that there are multiple correct answers. Based on the feelings of the interpreter. I thought you were an expert on post structuralism?


/r/askphilosophy Thread Parent