It’s analogous but I would submit to you that the notion of a woman is a few orders of magnitude…
Lorenzo Barberis Canonico
11

Yeah I want to find a better word than “symbol” since it implies something relatively simple and largely visual. I’m also conflating the personal “symbol,” which is your own interpretation of the concept, and the shared “symbol,” which is society’s aggregate concept. Society’s shared “symbols” are definitionally linguistic, or at least depend on some form of communication, whereas personal “symbols” can be non-linguistic.

As for the shared “symbol” of “woman,” it is extremely complicated precisely because individual definitions deviate so much. Think about what is actually shared across individuals, across cultures for what defines a “woman” and her role in society. Not much other than “sans penis.”

The shared “symbol” is complicated, but the individual “symbol” is not and is very much upper-limited by what the neural networks in your brain can encode.

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