Leonard Sax in Psychology Today:
If there are superstar scholars, Berkeley professor Judith Butler is a superstar. She is best known for pioneering the idea that “male” and “female” are merely social constructs. She writes that “because gender is not a fact, the various acts of gender creates the idea of gender, and without those acts, there would be no gender at all.” For this insight, she has been rewarded with an avalanche of scholarly honors and prizes, including the Mellon Prize, which carries with it a $1.5 million cash award. (By comparison, the Nobel Prize gets you just $1.1 million.)
Butler is a professor of comparative literature, not a neuroscientist, but her ideas about gender have become widely accepted worldwide in the nearly 30 years since the publication of her book Gender Trouble. In 2017, Cordelia Fine, professor of historical and philosophical studies at the University of Melbourne, published a book titled Testosterone Rex: Unmaking the myths of our gendered minds. Following Butler, Fine asserted that any claims that women and men differ significantly in brain or behavior are simply myths perpetuated by the heteronormative patriarchy. Fine’s book promptly received the Royal Society’s prestigious prize for best science book of the year.
The worldview promulgated by Butler, Fine, and their followers now constrains what neuroscientists are allowed to say in public.