Biomedicine is often considered an objective scientific approach that reflects nature. It is said to be unaffected by outside sources, such as from human influence and culture. However, the lecture reveals that biomedicine is in fact not devout of culture and is a part of western culture. Biomedical knowledge is culturally constructed. Bioculture is often made up dichotomies, such as sickness and health but nature does not present itself in twos.
I feel my opinion on dichotomies changed and shaped early on in college, due to me taking anthropology classes. I realized most dichotomies are socially constructed, such as having two ‘main’ genders of male and female. I think the reason we accept gender into dichotomy is that of that most cis women can biologically carry children, where cis men can not. I believe that we use childbearing, fertility, and menstruation as a function to carve out two genders. Sex is also often determined by chromosomes or the appearance of genetalia, neither of these is a perfect science. We often learn about the two ‘major’ chromosomal sets of XX or XY. Sex is also impacted by hormones, genetics, different chromosomal arrangements or exposure to testosterone or estrogen. Due to this diversity, we have to be conscious of assigning genders to people that they may not identify with, this is also a major argument against surgery on infants who have more ambiguous genitalia.
I feel like my exposure to my anthropology coursework forced me to challenge dichotomies in my own life. I think I am more open to fluidity and exceptions to ‘cultural rules.’ I believe there are an infinite amount of gender identities because the human race is diverse and I believe this is why we need to create a culture of acceptance towards all gender expressions.