A Harvard professor of evolutionary biology has been slammed by her department's diversity head for rejecting the term 'pregnant people' and insisting on referring to people as male or female instead.
Carole Hooven, who has been at the university for 20 years and received multiple teaching awards, spoke of feeling 'frustrated' at the atmosphere in academia.
She told Fox News on Wednesday that she was dismayed at the insistence on politically correct terminology, which she felt was misguided.
University professors were discouraged from using the words male and female, and referring to pregnant women, she said. The terms were deemed offensive to the transgender and LGBTQ community.
'I've been feeling pretty frustrated over the last five years or so. It's been gradual,' she said.
'This kind of ideology has been infiltrating science. It's infiltrating my classroom, to some extent.'
Hooven said that her lessons were focused on hormones and behavior, sex and sex differences
On July 13 she published a widely acclaimed book, 'T: The Story of Testosterone, the Hormone That Dominates and Divides Us'.
She continued: 'Part of that science is teaching the facts.
'And the facts are that there are in fact two sexes - there are male and female - and those sexes are designated by the kind of gametes we produce.
'Do we make eggs, big sex cells, or little sex cells, sperm. And that's how we know whether someone is male or female.
'And the ideology seems to be that biology really isn't as important as how somebody feels about themselves, or feels their sex to be.'
Earlier this week reporter Katie Herzog, writing for Bari Weiss' Substack newsletter, spoke with one student at a med school in the University of California system who says instructors are too scared to acknowledge the existence of two different sexes because it 'can be considered transphobic.'
The student, identified only as Lauren, told Herzog: 'I think there's a small percentage of instructors who are true believers [in woke ideology], but most of them are probably just scared of their students.'
Lauren claimed that, in recent months, students have circulated a number of petitions designed to 'name and shame' instructors for 'wrongspeak.'
Hooven was interviewed for the story, and said she was concerned about the trend in academica.
'You know, we can treat people with respect and respect their gender identities and use their preferred pronouns,' she said on Wednesday.
'So understanding the facts about biology doesn't prevent us from treating people with respect.'
Hooven said that the political correctness was 'incredibly confusing for science educators and for students trying to learn about the world and learn the tools of science and critical thinking.'
She said it was wrong for professors and the media to 'start backing away from using certain terms that they are afraid people will find offensive.'
She continued: 'And that fear is based in reality. People do find these terms offensive; they do complain on social media; they do shame people and even threaten to get people fired.
'So it's no wonder that a lot of people are caving and yielding to the social pressure.
'But we are doing students and the public a great disservice, and dividing the populace.'
Hooven's remarks were strongly criticized on Friday by Laura Simone Lewis, who tweeted: 'As the Director of the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force for my dept @HarvardHEB, I am appalled and frustrated by the transphobic and harmful remarks made by a member of my dept in this interview with Fox and Friends.
'Let’s be clear: if you respect diverse gender identities & aim to use correct pronouns, then you would know that people with diverse genders/sexes can be pregnant incl Trans men, intersex people & gender nonconforming people. That isn't too hard for medical students to understand.
'Inclusive language like “pregnant people” demonstrates respect for EVERYONE who has the ability to get pregnant, not just cis women. It is vital to teach med students gender inclusive language, as they will certainly interact with people that identify outside the gender binary.'
Lewis concluded that Hooven's remarks were 'dangerous' and inappropriate.
'This dangerous language perpetuates a system of discrimination against non-cis people within the med system,' she said.