EXTRO-3: Comments from Darren

Natasha V. More (natasha@extropic-art.com)
Wed, 13 Aug 1997 08:34:36 -0500

At 08:55 AM 8/10/97 +0100, Darren Reynolds wrote:

>For me, the surprises lay elsewhere in the proceedings. The conference
>seems to me a monumental achievement for the Extropy Institute.

This conference, as the one's in the past have been achievements. They
continue to expand and each one is rewarding.

>I did find the inclusion of a debate on the future of gender quite bizarre.
... Of the panelists, only Natasha actually commented on the FUTURE of

I enjoyed this panel because it did give me an opportunity to take the
audience into the future, if only for a short time.

>But despite the expectations one might have had from the title to
>the contrary, nobody actually discussed the future of GENDER. I still
>couldn't grasp just what, in a posthuman world, I would need gender for. I
>had some sympathy with Kathryn Aegis, whose widely heard yet silent
>statement was the loudest of all contributions. (She wasn't there.)

The future of gender was in my specific talk, sorry you missed it. I didn't
put a lot of emphasis on "gender" per se, because my area of discussion was
"sexuality." However, I did bring up new types of genders and stated that
there will be such enormous shifts in sexuality that it will affect gender.
A really wonderful moment was when I was asked what I thought about a
specific gender scenario as presented by Lenny Shaw from the audience. I
stated quite clearly that being gender balanced and gender biased was not a
transhumanist approach, in my view and alluded to other appoaches. At that
point, Dave Krieger, also from the audience, stepped up to the mic and
addressed the issue and presented his professional workplace as an example
of a mixture of genders to concur. I think it was summed up quite
excellently by Dave. I then took hold of the issue and make my final
comments in a summation of transhumanist ideas about gender.

It was unfortunate that Kathryn Ageis did not attend the discussion for two
reasons. First, and noteworthy, I intentionally cut my talk in half in
deference to Kathryn and anyone else in the audience who I knew would want
to openly discuss sexuality. I even called out to her one time during my
talk, and during questions and answers, asked Kathryn to come to the mic. It
is unfortuante she wasn't available. The second reason why I think this was
unfortunate is because silence cannot be heard.

If anyone has a voice that desires to be heard, the best way to address
ideas and issues is to come to the very format where they are being
discussed. The adverse is not a positive contribution. Fortunately,
neither Sharon nor Chris were aware of this at the time and it did not
interfere with their presentations.

Both Sharon and Chris made important contributions. I might not agree with
both of them, or either of them. BUT they, as anyone else at the
conference have a right to be heard, they were panelists.

Regardless of this glitch that you so dramatically mentioned, and the
uneasiness it caused, I had a lot of fun for my few minutes discussing

Natasha Vita More [fka Nancie Clark] - natasha@extropic-art.com

"Treat your friends as you do your pictures, and place them in their best
Jennie Jerome Churchill

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