News Flash: Boys, Girls, Different! Film at 11!

by Sidra M. S. Vitale
02/28/2004


I find it hard to work up a lot of enthusiasm for the following article:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/life/feature/story/0,13026,937913,00.html

but don't let that stop you from reading it. I just get a little tired of the obvious, sometimes.

Research like this, more specifically, articles like this on this area of research, while vital to the discussion of the very real, very important, sex-based differences in human beings, seem to promote gender stereotyping, and they never mention the range of variation that can be spanned by a large group of women and a large group of men.

All people are not alike. Do we share fundamental characteristics? Yes. Are we also unique individuals, with a one-of-a-kind expression of the genetic and environmental factors that make us up? Yes.

In the article above, you can read about Simon Baron-Cohen's systemizing-empathizing brain theory, which I'm sure has merit (in part because I'm a woman INTJ with a male twin, and thus the recipient of prenatal testesterone at a much higher level then a sole XX fetus would experience, with measurable effects on physiology, so why wouldn't there be brain differences?), though the tone is way too women='fashion and romance' and men='cars', which I (obviously) resent greatly.

But you know what I realized after reading this article?

If you read this article from an extreme pro-woman perspective, as you undoubtedly won't but probably should just for practicing a different POV sometime*, you may decide:

Women are expert at the far more complex and subtle systems of human interactions. Cars and computer games are just too simple to hold our attention.

Look, they're all systems. Human beings build and operate within systems. We are a social species -- we live, raise children, and feed ourselves in a group environment.

Computers are easy. Relationships, that's a challenge.

*Go on, it'll build character.


Copyright © 2004 by Sidra M. S. Vitale

02/08/07 at 21:47