Posts tagged: categorization

A Hill of Validity in Defense of Meaning

If you are silent about your pain, they'll kill you and say you enjoyed it.

—Zora Neale Hurston

Recapping my Whole Dumb Story so far—in a previous post, "Sexual Dimorphism in Yudkowsky's Sequences, in Relation to My Gender Problems", I told the part about how I've "always" (since puberty …

Peering Through Reverent Fingers

Any evolutionary advantage must come from a feature affecting our behavior. Thus, there is no evolutionary advantage to simply having a belief about our identity. Self-identity can matter and could have mattered only if it affects behavior, in which case it is really a process of self-identification. Moreover, it is …

Book Review: Cailin O'Connor's The Origins of Unfairness: Social Categories and Cultural Evolution

This is a super-great book about the cultural evolutionary game theory of gender roles! (And also stuff like race and religion and caste, I guess, but I'm ignoring that because I haven't gotten around to broadening the topic scope of this blog yet.) I am unreasonably excited about this book …

More Schelling


[A mediator] can influence the other players' expectations on his own initiative, in a manner that both parties cannot help mutually recognizing. When there is no apparent focal point for agreement, he can create one by his power to make a dramatic suggestion. [...]

The white line down the center …

Reply to The Unit of Caring on Adult Human Females

Thou shalt not strike terms from others' expressive vocabulary without suitable replacement.


The author of the (highly recommended!) Tumblr blog The Unit of Caring responds to an anonymous correspondent's observation that trans-exclusionary radical feminists tend to define the word woman as "adult human biological female":

Oh, yeah, sorry, I've …

The Categories Were Made for Man to Make Predictions

I said, "The truth is whatever you can get away with."

"No, that's journalism. The truth is whatever you can't escape."

Distress by Greg Egan

In "The Categories Were Made for Man, Not Man for the Categories", the immortal Scott Alexander argues that proposed definitions of concepts aren't true or …