Thursday, 10 October 2013

Male brain vs female brain: How do they differ?

Male brain vs female brain: How do they differ? | Science |

My comments:
Important points:
1. Differences are both biological and social (I'd put it as 20% biological, 80% socially constructed myself - but you can't ignore that 20%. It's real.)
2. Differences are statistical. It makes just as little sense to say "we can't employ a woman to do X because women aren't good at it" as to refuse to employ a woman who's 6' 4" tall because "women are too short". Even though most women are shorter than most men.
3. Saying all this is unpopular. Those who are biological essentialists deny the overwhelming effect of socialisation; those who are fanatic feminists deny the small but real statistical biological differences. Both dogmatic and extreme positions are ideological, not fact-based, and both groups will metaphorically or in the case of some of the more extreme religious groups, literally burn you at the stake for saying so. Your words will be twisted and position misrepresented by both parties.
4. Historically, it's the biological essentialist position that has been used to oppress women worldwide, and still is in many places today. So it's the greater evil. But there's a seed of truth in there that shouldn't be ignored, just because it's been grossly exaggerated, small differences magnified, and applied universally rather than statistically.
5. However.. it's the fanatic feminist position that has in recent times - the past 40 years - been used as an excuse to persecute and denigrate Trans and Intersex women, and to a lesser extent men. That's not happening in the uncivilised and illiterate NW Frontier, but on the pages of the Observer and Grauniad. People have died as the result. It should cease.
Please don't try to force individuals into stereotyped boxes, just because they happen to belong to a certain group with genuine but statistical biologically-based personality traits. Some will fit, others not, and you should neither critique them for "conforming to an oppressive gender binary" on one hand, nor "going against God's Natural Law" on the other.

1 comment:

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