La Fontaine’s allegory of “montrer patte blanche / showing the white paw” – from his fable «The Wolf, the Goat, and the Kid – should help me trace the problem of documenting sex and/or gender. In the first decade of the 21st century, the legislative bodies of certain social democratic countries (e.g. Australia, New Zealand, Nepal, Germany) have made a change into the binary system of presenting sex or gender on official identification documents, by introducing a third possibility – that (...) of gender indeterminacy. Would it now be possible to issue an official Id without knowing the precise sex of the person? My questioning tackles this new practice, measuring it from the standpoint of social ontology. (shrink)
Among the most outstanding discoveries of the last century is one that is not quite as momentous as the theory of relativity or cybernetics. It may even still be enigmatic. It has no one single author, it is not expressed in a single formula, conception, or invention. Nonetheless it is worth all the others combined.