Thursday, March 03, 2005

"Heteronormativity" - Drivel Disguised as Discourse

This utter crap, from Wikipedia, is taken seriously at "institutions of higher learning" throughout the world.
Heteronormativity is a term used in the discussion of gender and society, mostly, but not exclusively within the field of critical theory. It is used to describe, and, frequently, to criticize how many social institutions and social policies are seen to reinforce certain beliefs.
Okay, I'm with you so far.
These include the belief that human beings fall into two distinct and complementary categories, male and female;
You're losing me, guys. I personally don't know any hermaphrodites, eunuchs, or Klingons.
...that sexual and marital relations are normal only when between two people of different genders;
That's right. "Normal" is not a value judgment, it's a statistical description.
...and that each gender has certain natural roles in life.
I'm sure we could quibble about gender roles, but basically, the male contributes semen, and the female, an egg. Also, I refuse to curse Nature for not allowing me, as a man, to breastfeed my children.
Thus, physical sex, gender identity, and gender roles, should in any given person all align to either male or female norms,
Yes, that's correct.
...and heterosexuality is considered to be the only normal sexual orientation.
Again, you are correct, and again, I refer you to the definition of "normal".
The norms this term describes or criticizes might be overt, covert, or implied.
Wait a minute. Since the point of coining the word "heteronormativity" is to deny that "norms" exist, then you're not allowed to use the word "norm" in your definition, so there.
Those who identify and criticize heteronormativity say that it distorts discourse by stigmatizing alternative concepts of both sexuality and gender, and makes certain types of self-expression more difficult.
That may be, in fact, almost certainly is, true. The trouble with throwing away norms is that the values get thrown away with them. Some types of self-expression should be "more difficult". Particularly any form of self-expression that requires lubricating barnyard animals or flying airplanes into buildings.