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Delusions of Gender: How Our Minds, Society, and Neurosexism Create Difference

Cordelia Fine · 4 HN comments
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Amazon Summary
“[Fine’s] sharp tongue is tempered with humor. . . . Read this book and see how complex and fascinating the whole issue is.”― The New York Times It’s the twenty-first century, and although we tried to rear unisex children―boys who play with dolls and girls who like trucks―we failed. Even though the glass ceiling is cracked, most women stay comfortably beneath it. And everywhere we hear about vitally important “hardwired” differences between male and female brains. The neuroscience that we read about in magazines, newspaper articles, books, and sometimes even scientific journals increasingly tells a tale of two brains, and the result is more often than not a validation of the status quo. Women, it seems, are just too intuitive for math; men too focused for housework. Drawing on the latest research in neuroscience and psychology, Cordelia Fine debunks the myth of hardwired differences between men’s and women’s brains, unraveling the evidence behind such claims as men’s brains aren’t wired for empathy and women’s brains aren’t made to fix cars. She then goes one step further, offering a very different explanation of the dissimilarities between men’s and women’s behavior. Instead of a “male brain” and a “female brain,” Fine gives us a glimpse of plastic, mutable minds that are continuously influenced by cultural assumptions about gender. Passionately argued and unfailingly astute, Delusions of Gender provides us with a much-needed corrective to the belief that men’s and women’s brains are intrinsically different―a belief that, as Fine shows with insight and humor, all too often works to the detriment of ourselves and our society.
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Another great read is Delusions of Gender by Cordelia Fine.

http://www.amazon.com/Delusions-Gender-Society-Neurosexism-D...

steveklabnik
See this comment https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9845263 for a criticism of Fine and "Delusions of Gender."
Assuming no difference isn't Politically Correct (by which I take it you mean a social lie that nobody actually believes). Really, there are no differences (cf Delusions of Gender http://www.amazon.com/Delusions-Gender-Society-Neurosexism-D...). There is no difference between a woman's brain and a man's. Give two brain scans (fMRIs/MEGs/EEGs etc) to a neuroscientist and they cannot tell which one belongs to which gender.

And people do have qualms saying women are better at empathy. "Women's strengths" justifies sexism and boxing women into specific roles. In the 50's it was keeping women in the kitchen, "because they were naturally better at it and want to do it", now it's empathy and relationships which justifies them having to raise children and doing emotional labor.

Regardless, the article is bad, it makes a false dichotomy. First, Putnam should increase participation in girls, then it can remove the special women's prize.

xyzzyz
There is no difference between a woman's brain and a man's. Give two brain scans (fMRIs/MEGs/EEGs etc) to a neuroscientist and they cannot tell which one belongs to which gender.

This claim sounded fishy enough to me to warrant more research for sources, and the first Google result was http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neuroscience_of_sex_differences It does seem to clearly contradict your claim. Further research directed me to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexually_dimorphic_nucleus http://cercor.oxfordjournals.org/content/11/6/490.abstract Generally, searching for "sexual dimorphism human brain" brings up a lot of results. It seems that you should update your data.

I've read through "The Delusion of Gender"- http://www.amazon.com/Delusions-Gender-Society-Neurosexism-D..., where an Oxford, Cambridge, and UCL-educated Doctor of Psychology wrecks havok through Simon Baron-Cohen and his ilk's research.

It's a little boring, but systematic.

nailer
I'd rather trust a medical doctor to assess medical topics than a psychologist.

And exactly what 'nurture' are in-utero babies - the subject of the testosterone / interest tests - subjected to anyway?

You've read the book. Sum it up for us.

Anyone interested in gender studies and the current understanding of gender ought to read "Delusions of Gender" by Cordelia Fine. It is a fantastically interesting book.

http://www.amazon.com/Delusions-Gender-Society-Neurosexism-D...

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