On the Sex Deracination Gambit

19th July, 2021 10

Prospect Magazine is an “intellectuals’” magazine in the UK covering arts, society, science and politics. Their Summer issue contains an essay by journalist Angela Saini called “What is a woman?”. I wrote a twitter thread detailing how this essay is a good example of a type of argument used to trick people into thinking sex is not a well established scientific concept. This is that (slightly edited) twitter thread… This [read more…]

The Decline and Fall of Science-based Medicine

7th July, 2021 14

The philosophy of science-based medicine (SBM) is a response to perceived shortcomings in the practice of evidence-based medicine. EBM is the movement that strives to make medical treatments less dependent on the authority and experience of doctors, and instead put authority in the best available clinical evidence for that treatment. “EBM is the conscientious, explicit, judicious and reasonable use of modern, best evidence in making decisions about the care of [read more…]

On the Ontology and Epistemology of Sex

9th April, 2021 15

Much confusion appears to exist in popular discussion about the nature of sex. This has political importance at the moment, most visibly in recognition of people with trans identities in law and society. Confusions abound around conflations of the terms sex and gender, but, most fundamentally, about what a sex is, and what it means for an organism, animal or human, to have a sex. What is a sexed body? [read more…]

Scepticism and The Social Ubiquity of Magical Thinking

24th February, 2021 2

An essential read for any sceptic is the early 19th Century classic, The Golden Bough by Cambridge Scholar Sir James Fraser. Fraser set out to catalogue, describe and categorise the various forms of magic and religion around the world. It is a dense and rich book full of all sorts of traditions, beliefs, rituals and rites. The book sets out the principles of Sympathetic Magic early on. Sympathetic Magic is [read more…]