A hoax article titled, “The Conceptual Penis As A Social Construct”, was published in a peer-reviewed academic journal Friday. It sent the peer-review mystique for the social “sciences” crashing down and the hoaxers want to know what can be done about it. That was their point, along with a. few others.
The authors cheated a little by using climate change because anything that promotes that narrative is often a given for anything academic. The professors mocked the entire feminist critique of “toxic masculinity” at the same time.
The Daily Caller published the detailed story on Friday.
The hoax is funny but it should also be alarming to people. The peers who reviewed the article are likely guiding and even teaching our college youth.
While they wouldn’t agree with my next point, the social “sciences” are hardly sciences in the true sense of the word but that’s for another article.
The journal publishing the article is Cogent Social Sciences, which some academics say isn’t highly respected to begin with.
The authors, Peter Boghossian and James Lindsay, cited 20 sources they hadn’t read and included five fake papers that were “published” in fake journals.
They said the paper was “actively written to avoid having any merits whatsoever”. They opened by stating, “The androcentric scientific and meta-scientific evidence that the penis is the male reproductive organ is considered overwhelming and largely uncontroversial.”
Peter Boghossian is an assistant professor of philosophy at Portland State University, in Oregon, and James A. Lindsay, an independent scholar. They describe their exploit on the website of Skeptic magazine.
They used popular jargon and absurd assertions to poke fun at “the echo chamber of morally driven fashionable nonsense coming out of the postmodernist social ‘sciences.’”
The two see pay-to-play journals as damaging science and they want to see that changed.
The response to their hoax has run the gamut among academics. Some see them as “mean-spirited”.
Skeptic’s editor on the other hand wrote: Note from the editor: Every once in awhile it is necessary and desirable to expose extreme ideologies for what they are by carrying out their arguments and rhetoric to their logical and absurd conclusion, which is why we are proud to publish this expose of a hoaxed article published in a peer-reviewed journal today. Its ramifications are unknown but one hopes it will help rein in extremism in this and related areas. ~ Michael Shermer
A couple of passages are pretty funny.
The penis is damaging and problematic for society it says, and it is behind much of climate change!
We conclude that penises are not best understood as the male sexual organ, or as a male reproductive organ, but instead as an enacted social construct that is both damaging and problematic for society and future generations. The conceptual penis presents significant problems for gender identity and reproductive identity within social and family dynamics, is exclusionary to disenfranchised communities based upon gender or reproductive identity, is an enduring source of abuse for women and other gender-marginalized groups and individuals, is the universal performative source of rape, and is the conceptual driver behind much of climate change.
The defense and the smack at the “toxic hypermasculinity” is funnier still.
Toxic hypermasculinity derives its significance directly from the conceptual penis and applies itself to supporting neocapitalist materialism, which is a fundamental driver of climate change, especially in the rampant use of carbon-emitting fossil fuel technologies and careless domination of virgin natural environments. We need not delve deeply into criticisms of dialectic objectivism, or their relationships with masculine tropes like the conceptual penis to make effective criticism of (exclusionary) dialectic objectivism. All perspectives matter.
Figure this one out if you can.
Thus, the isomorphism between the conceptual penis and what’s referred to throughout discursive feminist literature as “toxic hypermasculinity,” is one defined upon a vector of male cultural machismo braggadocio, with the conceptual penis playing the roles of subject, object, and verb of action. The result of this trichotomy of roles is to place hypermasculine men both within and outside of competing discourses whose dynamics, as seen via post-structuralist discourse analysis, enact a systematic interplay of power in which hypermasculine men use the conceptual penis to move themselves from powerless subject positions to powerful ones.
Many of the reactions academics are having to this are defensive which doesn’t bode well for change. There is a point here and some aren’t getting it. What are the academics going to do about the echo chamber; the journals that get paid to publish; the peer-review process; the pre-conceived ideas that dominate intellectual pursuits; and the extreme positions coming from the likes of feminists and climate preachers?