Acknowledging women

Some Wittgensteinian ideas to clarify the cis/trans debate


  • Isabel Gloria Gamero Cabrera Philosophy Faculty. Complutense University of Madrid



Woman, Transfeminism, Essentialism, Private Language Argument, Bedrock, Blurred-edge Concept


My aim in this paper is to use some contents of the later Wittgenstein’s work, and some of its interpreters, to shed some light on the cis/trans debate, in which it is disputed what a woman is and who the subject of feminisms is. There is a stance, called cisfeminism, which do not acknowledge transgender women neither as women nor as subjects of feminisms. I analyse the main cisfeminist arguments from a Wittgensteinian perspective, taking into account (1) their plausible essentialism and (2) the everyday uses of language and its changes. Finally (3), I make some considerations about the effect that theories have in human lives.

Author Biography

Isabel Gloria Gamero Cabrera, Philosophy Faculty. Complutense University of Madrid

Isabel G. Gamero Cabrera is graduated in Philosophy and Communication, and has two Master Degrees in Philosophy and in Social and Cultural Anthropology. She got her PhD in Philosophy, at the Complutense University of Madrid, with a thesis entitled “Crossroads of Philosophy. Some difficulties about the notions of transcendentality and normativity in contemporary epistemology and political philosophy”. Her main areas of research are feminist theory and contemporary epistemology, in the intersection with political philosophy and with a special interest in the work of Wittgenstein. After her PhD, she was a researcher at the TU Berlin (Germany), where she studied and translated Günter Abel’s work into Spanish. She was also a visiting professor at the Autonomous University of Nayarit (México) and a postdoctoral researcher in the Social Sciencies and Education Faculty, of La Plata University (Argentina). She is currently an assistant professor at the Faculty of Philosophy at the Complutense University of Madrid, where she teaches Feminist Critique Theory, Feminist Epistemology and  Anthropology.


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