This article is specifically for the purpose of describing the various positions that individuals take, or could take, on sex, gender and the relationship between them. I am not endorsing any particular position in here (as I’m undecided between a number of these), but I cannot avoid some level of bias, which I hope that I have minimized by sharing this article for feedback.
Obviously, these are tough binaries to erect. They are not the most coherent, and there are numerous positions that fall between or outside of each of the binaries. I don’t intend this article to be an exhaustive list of all the theories of sex and gender that exist; just a quick exposition of the most common positions in each category, specifically for the purpose of using these distinctions of helping us understanding ongoing disputes.
Even more, there are numerous distinctions in the feminist analytical philosophy literature that could be expounded upon here, but these distinctions are largely irrelevant to the broad positions that individuals in the public sphere take.
If you’ve ever walked into or happened upon a discussion on the meaning of “woman”, “gender” or “sex”, especially on the internet, there’s a pretty good likelihood it’s a debate over how trans people ought to be considered. Beyond the semantic (which, of course, is not unimportant) disputes over whether trans men are men / trans women are women, there are deep theoretical divides over the referents and meanings of the words throughout the debate. Since there is a lot of very theory-specific terminology, I thought it might be useful to sketch out some taxonomies for the positions within this dispute.
Gender, of course, is one of the concepts under the most contest. This contest over the meaning of gender and the members of gender categories has extended into many other domains, so it’s best to start here.
Gender obviously does not refer simply to one particular concept; there are a number of related surrounding concepts (all linked through polysemy). Note that the definitions I give below are not the only definitions and should not be taken as final. They are simply the definitions that I’ve reconstructed from large amounts of discourse and reading on this topic; there are, of course, numerous other definitions one could offer up.
Gender norms are taken to be the social norms that society dictates members of a particular gender (or sex on some construals) ought to exhibit.
Gender stereotypes are the stereotypes (group generalizations from a subset of individuals to the group as a whole) that society takes to be emblematic of a gender/sex category as a whole.
Gender identity is taken to be a psychological disposition that an individual obtains and expresses outwardly with statements of their self-identity.
Gender expression (also described as gender attribution by Kate Bornstein) is taken to be the clothing, hair, makeup, behaviors and other ‘surface-level’ bodily features that are socially taken to signify membership or disidentification with a particular gender/sex. This relation is understood as culturally mediated.
Gender roles are taken to mean particular social roles (that is a social position in which members of that position have social obligations) that are regulated by variable cultural institutions and that members of a particular gender/sex are ‘directed toward’.
Gender assignment is taken to be the signification of an individual as a member of a particular gender kind; in most instances male/man or female/woman.
Biological gender, in Kate Bornstein’s terms, is constituted by a number of biological properties ranging from body type, chromosomes, hormones, genitals, reproductive characteristics, breasts, body hair, etc. She denotes this as biological gender rather than sex simply because she refuses to give biology primacy over social identity.
Gender simpliciter is variously taken to mean any of the above, but within specific feminist theoretical currents, it is taken to mean ‘masculinity’ and ‘femininity’ as constructed norms violently imposed onto men (or males) & women (or females) respectively.
Gender Realism vs Nominalism
One of the traditional divisions within analytical feminist philosophy-feminist metaphysics and feminist philosophy of gender-is the distinction between “realists” about gender and “nominalists” about gender. These terms have different meanings in other fields of philosophy, and of course in online discourse, so I’ll give a brief overview.
Gender realism is the thesis that there is a single “womanness” that unites all women; there is a single “essence” that each woman obtains and can be identified by. This position is also known as “gender essentialism” (which has distinct meanings in other aspects of the debate, as well) and “neo-gender realism”. Advocates of this position are typically motivated by a profound political motivation for uniting the category of womanhood for feminist purposes; the common adage goes along the lines of ‘one needs to be able to identify women in order to advocate/fight for them’.
Modern advocates of this position within philosophy are: Mari Mikkola, Charlotte Witt, Sally Haslanger.
Gender nominalism is the position that there is not a single essence or attribute that unites “womanhood” as a single category. There are several motivations for this position, but the reason it has become a near consensus view within feminist philosophy is because of the “essentialism critique”; that to posit a single attribute that unites women is to essentialize the construct, as well as exclude paradigmatic examples of women.
Modern advocates of this position within philosophy are: Elizabeth Spelman, Natalie Stoljar
Internalism vs Externalism
One of the most frustrating aspects of the debate is misunderstanding between parties over what they (and the other party) believes the term ‘woman’ to refer to. I believe there are about three main positions within this dispute, but first: a taxonomy.
Robin Dembroff’s recent article on the philosophy of “genderqueer” identified a particular divide within the literature: internalism vs externalism. They used this division to help demarcate the different ways one can define gender kinds, as well as to perform a critique of the current options.
Internalism here was taken to mean that an “internal feature” of a person individuates them as a member of a particular gender kind (woman, man, genderqueer), whereas externalism means that an external feature of a person individuates them as a member of a particular gender kind.
Some of the individuals that advocate for an internalist approach to gender terms are: Katherine Jenkins, Jennifer Saul, and Jennifer McKitrick. Some examples of these are described below in the individuating properties section, under “internal psychological dispositions”
Some of the philosophers that advocate for an externalist approach to gender terms are: Sally Haslanger and Ásta Sveinsdóttir. Some of the examples of such definitions are described below in the individuating properties section, under “external social properties”.
As described above, the position typically denoted as “realism” within the philosophy of gender is one taken to state that genders have “essences”; a single property that unites all members of that gender kind and can be used to identify them. It’s also commonly referred to as “essentialism”, for there is one property/trait that unites the members of the gender kind.
Note that there are other understandings of essentialism that are more broad: include more positions. This is the understanding that I’ve seen most consistently throughout philosophical literature.
There are four types of essentialisms here: biological, metaphysical, social and psychological.
Biological essentialism (often described as biologism) is the thesis that a single biological property individuates women/men. This is typically taken by laypeople to be genitalia, chromosomes or gonads. This can be expressed as the formulation, for example:
Agent A is a woman iff A has XX chromosomes.
In the case of cluster accounts, consider the claim:
Agent A is a female iff they obtain a sufficient number of female biological attributes.
Then, the position:
Agent A is a woman iff they are a female
is an essentialist one.
And accounts such as:
Agent A is a woman iff they have an endogenously produced female reproductive form
also appeal to a qualified, but still essentialist, core property P.
Correspondingly, metaphysical essentialism entails that:
Agent A is a woman iff A has a womanly soul.
Social essentialism, for example, can mean:
Agent A is a woman iff A stands in a relation of sexual subordination to men
And finally psychological essentialism could be either (non-exhaustively) of these two theses:
Agent A is a woman iff A has a feminine gender identity
Agent A is a woman iff A exhibits feminine gender properties
Note, the last position is not strictly essentialist in the sense denoted above, as it does not directly posit an “essence” necessary for womanhood, but rather a vague set of “feminine gender properties”. This can easily be modified as such:
Take “a feminine person” to denote someone whose gender properties mark them as more feminine than not. Then:
Agent A is a woman iff A is a feminine person.
Note that I’m not aware of anyone within feminist philosophy who holds any of these positions (bar the social essentialism one), so these are solely examples.
Beyond the division carved out in the last section, there are disputes over what properties people can obtain that distinguish them as a “woman” vs a “man” vs another gender.
Here, I see three main categories/groups of positions on this topic: those who think biological properties individuate gender kinds, those who thinks external social properties individuate gender kinds, and those who believe that internal psychological dispositions individuate gender kinds. In short, these are the biological, social and psychological approaches to gender.
Those who believe gender is biological hold that there are certain biological properties that one must have in order to be considered a woman or a man. These are typically surrounding features like chromosomes, genitalia, gonads, gametes and other so-called ‘sex characteristics’. I am not currently aware of any philosophers within analytic philosophy who hold this position. Linda Nicholson has alternatively termed this position “biological foundationalism”: she considers it as a position very close to, but subtly distinct from biological determinism.
Agent A is a woman iff A has at least 2 of the following properties:
1) XX chromosomes
2) A vagina
3) A uterus
Agent A is a woman iff A closely resembles in terms of biological properties the paradigmatic case of womanhood W.
Those who hold that gender is constituted by social properties believe that being in a particular social position constitutes one as a “man”, “woman” or other. This can mean being subordinated based on perceived features of an individual, a relational meaning in terms of particular social institutions, and other related social properties. Some of the philosophers that hold these positions are those described above; Sally Haslanger, Monique Wittig, etc.
Agent A is a woman iff A is subordinated on the basis of A’s perceived physiological features that socially connotes A as a member of a particular sex
Agent A is a woman iff A is subordinated on the basis of their relationship to the institution of heterosexuality.
And finally, those who hold that gender is constituted by internal psychological features. These theorists are profoundly aware of the problems with biological and social accounts of having misspecified extensions, and wish to provide an account that avoids these problems. As such, they typically appeal to psychological properties such as dispositions and relationalities between the individual and society.
Agent A is a woman iff A’s internal ‘map’ is formed to guide someone classed as a woman through the social or material realities that are, in that context, characteristic of woman in the class sense
Where ‘woman in the class sense’ refers to one of the subordination definitions above.
Agent A is a woman iff A considers gender norms P, Q, etc, that are culturally associated with ‘womanhood’ as applicable to them.
There are, of course, a number of alternative positions available.
Structuralist vs Anti-Structuralist
Yet another distinction made within the literature over gender refers to the how philosophers think that certain gender kinds are constituted. This is referred to by Matthew Cull as the “structuralist” vs “anti-structuralist” distinction. When philosophers talk about gender, they typically do so in two ways.
Analytic philosophers tend to give hyperspecified definitions that can be used exactly to denote who is and is not a member of a gender kind. This is the ‘structuralist position’, as it entails that the ‘logical structure’ of gender can be specified. Structuralists about gender believe that there is a specific way genders are constituted and defined that allows for easy extension; gender is a Wittgensteinian family resemblance, gender is a resemblance class, that gender is constituted by a homeostatic cluster of properties. Prominent structuralists about gender are: Natalie Stoljar, Cressida Heyes.
On the other hand, anti-structuralists about gender deny that there exists a logical structure of gender (either at all, or that if it exists, we cannot access it). They claim that we are able to say something about the mechanisms that construct or constitute gender/are constructed & constituted by gender-social outcomes, regulatory norms, etc-but that the actual individuating properties that allow us to declare that “A is a woman” in some way, don’t actually exist, are inaccessible or that specifying them would be socially harmful. This is not to say that “women” do not exist, or that feminism is a hopeless endeavour, but is a specific claim about the impossibility of locating/identifying the makeup of gender itself, instead analyzing its effects. Prominent anti-structuralists include Julia Kristeva and Judith Butler, and Weston Richey also seems to lean toward this position.
Eliminativism, Reformism and Preservationism
Another debate about “gender” is over whether we ought (in the moral sense) to eliminate, or abolish it. Gender, or some forms thereof, is seen by the vast majority of feminists as undesirable in many ways, whether for its defining characteristics, its harmful outcomes, or the social structures it generates.
Here it is important to revisit a distinction made earlier: the billions of partitions of gender into little tiny aspects with different purposes in feminist theory; gender roles, gender norms, gender stereotypes, gender expression, etc.
Obviously any feminist worth their salt is going to want to abolish, or at the very least loosen, some of those. I can’t think of a feminist that I know that doesn’t want to abolish/loosen gender roles, norms and stereotypes. I know I am an ardent advocate of the position that gender roles, norms and stereotypes should be absolutely abolished in every sense of the word (more on this later), but some feminists I know are more ‘defeatist’/’pragmatist’ in that they think normal cognitive processes will generate associations between particular sex-genders and social-psychological-behavioral attributes, but wish to make it so that these associations are less normative, rigid and ‘natural’. This position is known as reformism.
These feminists-the ones who want to ‘reform’ but retain forms of gender-can be termed ‘gender reformists’, while those like me who wish to abolish gender can be termed ‘gender eliminativists’, and reactionaries that are fine with the current state of affairs can be termed ‘gender preservationists’. It is obvious that one can be an eliminativist about one type of gender (as in the taxonomy above), but not another. One can wish to abolish gender roles and gender stereotypes, but preserve gender identity and gender norms as unfortunately inevitable in some way.
So, here, we should denote what it means to be an eliminativist, preservationist or reformist about something:
A position P is eliminativist about gender type T iff P entails the elimination/abolition of gender type T.
A position P is preservationist about gender type T iff P entails the preservation of gender type T as substantially similar to the way that it exists in our current world.
A position P is reformist about gender type T iff P entails the modification/reformation of gender type T from the way it exists in our current world to a state in which it does not generate social ills
So to be eliminativist about gender roles and reformist about gender identity is perfectly compatible, at least theoretically.
Philosophers who are eliminativists in some sense are Monique Wittig, Sally Haslanger, Eloy LaBrada, while philosophers such as Mari Mikkola, Katherine Jenkins and Cressida Heyes are reformists/preservationists in some sense.
Extensionalism vs Intensionalism
One difference between some ‘camps’ in the gender debate is how one comes to formulate their concept of gender, and the consequences of the extension (that is: who it does or does not apply to) of the gender term.
Some philosophers wish to use ‘woman’ to refer to everyone that is socially considered a woman or ought to be, at least in some contexts. This approach starts from a prespecified group of women, and then works backwards to analyze the constitution of womanhood. I’ll call this approach the intensionalist approach, as it begins with the extension to identify the intension. In this camp, I would put Katherine Jenkins, Talia Mae Bettcher, Jennifer McKitrick, Weston Richey and Robin Dembroff.
Other philosophers start with a prespecified meaning of womanhood; often derived from pre-existing social/linguistics meanings or theoretical concerns, and then considers who their concept of womanhood ‘applies to’; the extension. I call this camp the extensionalists for that reason. In this camp, I’ve identified Monique Wittig and Sally Haslanger.
‘Woman’ As A Gender Term?
Another dispute is over the referent of the term ‘woman’. Some believe that to be a woman means to be ‘an adult human female’, as some dictionaries specify. Others, mostly feminists, hold that to be a woman means to have some social, psychological or other properties, as described above. As Mari Mikkola puts it in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, “many feminists have understood ‘woman’ differently: not as a sex term, but as a gender term that depends on social and cultural factors”.
I’ll refer to the first position, that ‘woman = adult human female’ where ‘female’ is understood as biological sex, as ‘woman as sex’, while I’ll refer to the second position, that ‘woman = some social position/role’, as ‘woman as gender’.
As I noted above, most feminists hold that “woman” is a social role, like the aforementioned Mari Mikkola, as well as Sally Haslanger and Ásta Sveinsdóttir. I’m not aware of any academic feminist philosophers who hold to the ‘woman as sex’ position, but it’s a position that I’ve commonly encountered online as a form of naive appeals to the dictionary.
Here we can finally introduce the concept of ‘sex’, to which the dispute over gender has increasingly extended.
Sex is somewhat less controversial in that it is more agreed that ‘sex’ has something to do with biological properties, but even this view has been contested. The typical ‘dictionary’/’biology class’ notion of sex that one is introduced to is the view that ‘sex’ is composed of a set of related ‘sex traits’ divided into two categories: primary sex characteristics and secondary sex characteristics.
Primary sex characteristics are typically taken to include (exhaustively): genitalia, chromosomes, gonads [and other reproductive organs], gamete production and hormones.
Secondary sex characteristics are typically taken to include (non-exhaustively): breasts, body fat composition, absence/presence of facial/body hair, voice, etc.
I won’t go into any more detail here about the composition, constitution and construction of the sex concept (this is the topic for another article) other than to say that many authors like Marie-Claude Hurtig and Marie-France Pichevin argue that because biologists, sexologists and anatomists see ‘sex’ as composed of a number of traits (described above) that can be ‘mismatched’ & themselves don’t fit perfectly into binaries, that the process by which sex becomes binary (i.e. the reduction of those traits to a single one) is itself a social act.
Gender and/vs/or Sex
Now that we’ve mapped out all of the terminology in these debates, we should discuss the relationship between gender and sex & the varying positions taken on this question.
One position that I consider naive is the one that holds that ‘sex’ refers to reproductive form (of some kind) and that gender (as masculinity and femininity) is then imposed (typically structurally violently) onto the presupposed body (like a coat [gender] onto the coat-rack [sex]). This was the view of authors like Anne Oakley (until the 90s), Gayle Rubin (on some readings), and Sally Haslanger.
Another position holds that gender itself is a system of domination and that ‘sex’ is a post hoc justification for this system of domination; physiology comes to mark individuals in order for the distinction between members of ‘sexes’ to become salient, so that domination can occur. Proponents believe that rather than sex preceding gender such that gender can be ‘laid upon’ sex (as in the coat-rack model), gender itself precedes and constructs sex. Authors in this vein include Monique Wittig, Nicole-Claude Mathieu, Christine Delphy and Colette Guillaumin.
Another position makes use of the extensive distinction between the different ‘parts and parcels’ of gender delineated above to specify the relation between each ‘part’ with sex & one another. Gender roles are understood as being historically contingent social institutions based on physiological sex, whereas gender norms and stereotypes become embedded into cultural phenomena and consciousness following the association of specific behavioral and psychological traits with a particular sex. Gender assignment [sometimes used equivalently with sex assignment] is used to understand the cross-cultural variation in the ways that gender categories operate; particularly in the ethnographic and anthropological literature. Gender expression is understood as the signification of various associations of clothing, bodily organizations, etc with gender classes that is then embodied into gender norms. This model is detailed and seems to undergird (along with slight variations) large bodies of sociological, anthropological, historical and activist literature on gender.
Gender has alternatively been understood as the cultural schemata that regulate bodies into sexed categories (termed sexes in the case of biology); whether of behavior, biology, or so on. This position has been taken by Jennifer Germon, Suzanne J. Kessler, Wendy McKenna, and Joan Scott, but is very closely related to the position demarcated above.
Increasingly popular following various critiques in the 80s and 90s is the decision to ‘deflate’ gender and sex into a single construct. The gender/sex distinction is seen as a contingent relic of a particular historical mode of thought; an outgrowth of Western metaphysics that highlights mind/body, culture/nature, social/biological, nurture/nature distinctions as the center of analysis itself. Feminists who reject these distinctions see the necessary consequence as the deflation of the sex-gender distinction and the amalgamation of the terms into ‘sex-gender’, ‘gender-sex’, ‘sex/gender’, etc. This position has been increasingly taken by feminist scientists like Rebecca Jordan-Young, Anne Fausto-Sterling and Sari van Anders, as well as philosophers like Shelly Ortner, Raia Prokhonvik, Toril Moi, and even further by feminists like Catherine MacKinnon and Moira Gatens.
How The Sex Binary Is Articulated
There are a few positions that feminists take with respect to whether the concept we call ‘sex’ is to be considered a binary by nature, that it’s constituted by nonbinary biology socially forced into binary paradigms, or if it’s a social concept in and of itself that is signified by biological signs. One can isolate two trends in these tripartite taxonomy; authors who believe sex is naturally binary vs authors who believe it is naturally nonbinary, and authors who take sex as biologically grounded vs authors who believe sex is socially constructed. This is not closely delineated in the tripartite description given below, but can be reconstructed.
The first position aligns with that of the general populace; there are ‘two sexes’, correspondingly to two reproductive forms, two gametes, two genitalia, etc. This binary is considered to have ‘errors’ or ‘deviations’ that are embodied by various developmental ‘disorders’, which do not reflect on the binary nature of ‘sex’ itself. I’m not aware of any feminist theoreticians who currently hold a position analogous to this, at least not explicitly.
The second position holds that while ‘sex’ may be a biological concept with specific biological constituents, it would be irresponsible and socially harmful to ‘carve nature at its joints’, that is, to force sex to become a binary by some philosophical treatise or game. Biology is understood as prediscursive, but the categories into which biology is ‘carved’ is understood as inherently culturally inflected. This position is perhaps best represented by Anne Fausto-Sterling, as well as authors like Georgiann David and other authors who work on intersex. In the feminist tradition, it is also represented (in a more complicated way) by Ásta Sveinsdóttir.
The third position holds that the distinction between ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ is at best complicated, and at worst incoherent. Gender is typically understood to precede sex so that binary organizations of gender construct binary organizations of sex. Sex is varyingly understood as constituted by social positions (institutionally and structurally), an effect of social matrices that regulate sexed activity, etc, of which biology is post factum used to identify individuals for social oppression. This position is most commonly held by a number of feminists in the materialist feminist tradition (originally in France) like Monique Wittig, Colette Guillaumin and Christine Delphy.
Another position that I have yet to read and understand comprehensively is put forth in “Gender: Genealogy of an Idea” by Jennifer Germon.
The Question of Constructionism
One of the biggest, perhaps, ‘buzzwords’ we’ve seen in the discourse is that of ‘constructionism’ and ‘realism’. These are typically counterposed to one another, such that a constructionist believes that ‘sex’ (or some other concept) doesn’t actually exist in reality, while realists think that it does. This is a mistaken understanding of both ‘realism’, constructionism and the positions that people are taking in these debates.
Constructionism in most fields of philosophy is understood as the position that a certain concept, object, belief, etc is mind-dependent in some way, such that the concept, object, belief, etc exists contingent on a single or group of people’s attitudes, beliefs and/or dispositions. A clearer and more detailed exposition of what philosophers mean when they call something a construct can be found in Ian Haacking’s The Social Construction of What? and Sally Haslanger’s various articles and books (see Resisting Reality, Gender and Social Construction: Who? What? When Where? How? and her recent and very relevant book chapter The Sex/Gender Distinction and the Social Construction of Reality and the taxonomy given in her article Ontology and Social Construction). In any case, constructionists about sex typically believe that sex is constructed in one of two ways (although there are others): 1) by the medical refiguration of genitalia and bodies of intersex individuals, forcing bodies to conform to a binary norm, and 2) as the outcome of a heterosexualist society in which maleness and femaleness are inherently connected to a dominant oppressive apparatus of heterosexuality.
It is important to note here that to claim that something is constructed remains agnostic about what is constructed out of; it is possible that the constituents of a particular concept are genetic, biological, etc, but that the particular way in which the constituents compose the concept or the fact that they do at all, is a cultural result.
Some advocates for (some variant of) constructionism about sex are: Monique Wittig, Judith Butler and Ásta Sveinsdóttir.
Realism in most fields of philosophy entails the claim that the existence of a particular concept is mind-independent. For instance, moral realism is the claim that moral facts exist independently of anyone’s beliefs, attitudes or dispositions. Realism about sex would entail that ‘males’ and ‘females’ are transhistorical categories that have and will exist so long as the criterion for instantiating them are satisfied (that is typically some set of biological properties).
There don’t seem to be any clear exponents of realism about sex in the feminist, social ontology or sociology literatures, but realism about sex seems to undergird a number of the sex/gender distinctions put forth, which are held by quite a number of feminists.
Now, for the actual meat of the conversation: trans people. This debate is first and foremost about what sex-genders trans people ought to be considered as; whether trans women ought to be considered “men” or “women”, trans men as “women” or “men”, and so on. There are really three configurations to this discussion:
1) Trans women are women, trans men are men, trans women are male, trans men are female.
There are a number of ways that people reach these conclusions, either by collapsing the sex-gender distinction (see above), by particular construals of “female” (perhaps exclusive of some trans women, but not all).
2) Trans women are women, but male. Trans men are men, but female.
On this view, there is typically a distinction between sex and gender; “woman” is a gender term, while “male” is a sex term. Trans women are of the “woman” gender, but of the “male” sex. Advocates typically ground these positions in the “woman as social role/position” belief described above.
3) Trans women are men and male, trans men are women and female.
This position is usually advocated by those who hold to the non-feminist position combining “woman=adult human female” and the position that womanhood/femaleness are grounded in biological properties.
These distinctions are not clearly made within the literature, but it seems that any one of the three is compatible with just about any combination of the aforementioned views, so it is nominally up in the air as to what position vis a vis 1 or 2 particular pro-trans feminist authors are holding.
References and Further Reading
Bornstein, K. (1994). Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women and the Rest of Us. New
Briggs, R. and George, B.R. (manuscript). “Science Fiction Double Feature:
Trans Liberation on Twin Earth.”
Cull, Matthew (2016). Anti-Essentialism about Gender: Realist, Constructionist, or Error Theoretical?
Dembroff, Robin (2018). Beyond Binary: Genderqueer as Critical Gender Kind. Manuscript.
Gaten, Moira, (1983), ‘A Critique of the Sex/gender Distinction’, in Allen, J. and Patton, P. (eds), Beyond Marxism? Interventions After Marx, NSW: Intervention Publishers.
George, B.R. 2016. What even is gender? Manuscript, CMU.
Haslanger, Sally. (2012). Resisting reality: Social construction and social critique. New York: Oxford University Press.
Heyes, Cressida J. 2000. Line drawings: Defining women through feminist practice. Ithaca:
Cornell University Press.
Jenkins, K. (2016). Amelioration and Inclusion: Gender Identity and the Concept of Woman. Ethics 126(2): 394-421.
Jenkins, Katharine (2018). Toward an Account of Gender Identity. Ergo, 5(27), 713–744.
LaBrada, Eloy F., (2017). Debating Gender Eliminativism in Feminist Metaphysics (Unpublished master’s thesis). University of Alberta.
Prokhovnik, R. (1999). Rational woman: A feminist critique of dichotomy. New York: Routledge
Spelman, Elizabeth, (1988). Inessential woman. Boston: Beacon Press
Stoljar, Natalie, (2011). Different women: Gender and the realism-nominalism debate. In Feminist metaphysics, ed. Charlotte Witt. New York: Springer.
Sveinsdóttir, Á. K. (2011). “The Metaphysics of Sex and Gender”. In
Feminist Metaphysics: Explorations in the Ontology of Sex, Gender and
the Self, Charlotte Witt (ed.). Springer.
Wittig, M. (1992). “One Is Not Born a Woman”. In The Straight Mind and
Other Essays. Beacon Press