Hi everyone!

As we think about how science relates to society, including to questions of gender, sex, race, class, sexuality, etc., we’re going to encounter arguments that might be roughly grouped together under the label ‘biological determinism.’ We’ll be exploring this concept in more detail next week (week 5), but in the meantime, we can get started by thinking carefully about the following questions (remember – this is not a test!):

What might it mean to say that an individual is determined by their biology? Or that someone is essentially who and how they are due to biological characteristics?

What role does biology play in relation to society? What role does society play in relation to biology? In other words, does biology influence society? Does society influence biology? How, exactly?

Can we think of examples where biology is used to explain individual behaviors and social relations? That is, can we think of examples where society is explained by reference to biology? Do we find such examples persuasive? Yes? No? Maybe? It depends?

I very much look forward to cultivating our thoughts on these and related questions in this and week’s to come!

All best and do take care,

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