Einstein in space 538

Men, Math, and Masculinity – Part 2

A few weeks ago, I submitted an essay about “Men, Math and Masculinity,” now renamed as Part 1 for this is a Part 2 I did not intend to write.

There was a backlash, on Facebook and on other web sites. The backlash began as an email trickle and I was soon overwhelmed with hate mail informing me I should not be teaching and that I hated women.  I had to stop reading the emails.

So now I would like to respond, point-wise.

First: I never said women cannot do math.

Second: I stated that after forty years of interventions, there remains a 30 point gap in math scores between high school men and women; this gap will not go away.  That is a fact.

Third: I stated that this 30 point gap is due exclusively to the top one percent scores.  If one ignores the top one percent, the average math scores are the same for men and women.  However, what has happened is that math competence is dropping precipitously for both men and women.  And that is a fact.

Fourth: I stated that there are biological differences in the brains of men and women. Women have more inter-hemispheric neurons and men have more neurons that run along the hemispheres. These are facts.  It is possible that this gives rise to a male ability to focus, and the female ability to multi-task and communicate. And while this has no bearing on day to day life, it likely impacts the top one percent male and female achievers. It is possible that those top one percent in math, created math as a reflection of the male brain. (There was a lot of hate email on the broken reference links.  The links were not broken; they were references.  So please exploit your communication ability: use a library.)

Fifth: I stated that women are immensely capable of achievements in math needed for participation in engineering.  But the constant tweaking of the math curriculum is ruining math for boys and, more so, for girls. And this, I think, is causing boys and many more girls, to drop out.

Sixth: I stated that it is likely that the top one percent in math will remain male dominated (just as nursing is likely to remain female dominated).

Seventh: Despite the aforementioned, I did say that women are eminently capable of being in that top one percent in math, but when they do, they are thinking like men.

BEGIN DIGRESSION

Many feminist theorists are deconstructing masculinity. I take no issue with this.

Some feminist theorists suggest that masculinity cannot be analyzed as a performance by men, the way femininity can be analyzed (using feminist methods); they claim it is difficult to pry maleness and masculinity apart.  I take no issue with this, either.

Some suggest that lesbians can “perform” masculinity “without men.”  I take no issue with this.

If masculinity is a performance, and if maleness is tied too tightly to it, then it is logical to assume lesbians can consciously “perform” masculinity better than men.  I take no issue with this either.

The only issue I take is that when a feminist/lesbian/drag-kings wishes to “perform masculinity,” they only “perform” brutes and not mathematicians.

So what is wrong with suggesting that there is another form of masculinity, math, that can also be “performed” by women?  And that if we taught women how to perform this, they would excel in math and engineering?

END DIGRESSION

So, yes, I do think that some of the world’s greatest female mathematicians appropriated masculine ways of thinking: Sophie Germain (she dressed like a man) and Emily Noether (who was a substitute teacher for her father). What is so wrong about thinking like a man?  And as a reminder, of those I named in my essay, who were in the top one percent, two were male and one was female.

Eighth: I suggested that while math is abstract, it is a fabric we wrap around the physical world. In fact, Issac Newton invented calculus to study physical motion. And if we want more children to study math, we should reintroduce physical activity into the classroom: let them play games, see physics and then intuit the math. Let them kick soccer balls to see the Magnus effect; let them throw footballs to see the gyroscopic effect; let them throw rocks to see the parabolic trajectories. Instead, we are removing physical activity. And now children, and especially boys, no longer have the ability to envision math, physically. In fact, if you want more girls to study math, one way is to re-introduce the physicality that boys so desperately need (and much more than girls at that age); instead we are only introducing drugs to eliminated physicality (especially in the boys).

Ninth: Despite what people now think, we are NOT introducing engineering into the K12. We are introducing design. And if we blithely think that will fix the problem, we are in for a shock when students enter college and hit the wall of analytical engineering. We are relying too much on design engineering in the K12 and that will cause problems.

To those lunatics who emailed me and told me they did not want me teaching their daughters, I can only say this: you are right. I should not teach your daughters.  Your thinking has likely already done them too much damage.

I have no issue with women being better at communication and multi-tasking. That was all we heard last year during the US budget crisis: “if women ran Congress, there would have been no shut-down.” I also think it is possible women might have a slight edge in general practice medicine; I now see a female MD and she is good.  And I take pride when my wife tells me I am thinking like a woman. So when did it become misogynistic to suggest that thinking in math is thinking like a man?

When feminism was about economic, political and social equality, I supported it. But now it is about biological equality. And that, specifically, was my point. If you want to fix the math scores for boys and girls and draw more girls into engineering, we must set aside our obsession over a top one percent, learn how men think (for men created the language of math) and find ways to bring this thinking (abstraction, visualization, physicality, focus) back into the math curriculum for both boys and girls.

Gloria Steinem said, “We’ve begun to raise daughters more like sons…”  Is that any different from what I wrote? I am just giving the details on how to do it and its possible positive ramifications.

If there was a slant of male pride in my essay, is that such a problem? In a world where men are vilified as murderers, rapists, spouse beaters, child molesters and for holding responsibility for society’s ills, is it so wrong for someone to take pride in being a man and in what men have achieved?

Also, the closure of my essay, about peeing while standing, was meant to be self-effacing fun. I am still reeling at all that hate I received over that closure. It was meant to be an anecdotal touch of humor, a joke – to induce laughter.

Here’s a joke: How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?  Answer: That’s not funny!

And, finally, if we do not start to teach math (as opposed to arithmetic), differently, in a language which the boys might just understand naturally (no different from how girls communicate better, naturally: nothing wrong with either), but which could readily be supplemented with “translators-based technologies” for the girls (to encourage their participation), then we will fail as a technical society.  And that’s really not funny.

 


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About Thomas Impelluso

Thomas Impelluso was born and raised in the Bronx -- his greatest achievement. He holds a BA in Art History (Columbia U.) and a Ph.D. in engineering (UCSD). He is now both an emeritus professor of engineering at a US university, and a professor of engineering in Europe. He is married to a beautiful woman (in every sense of the word) and has two children.

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  • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ Dean Esmay

    It speaks volumes that these ideological bullies did not try discussing this here, they instead just launched on a mass campaign of hate and lies on other sites. Bravo to you, Professor, for not kowtowing to these ideological thugs!

    • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ Dean Esmay

      Oh and by the way, here is–seriously–a woman’s guide to how to pee standing up. Yes, women can learn to do this if they want, and it’s not that hard! http://www.wikihow.com/Urinate-Standing-Up-as-a-Female

      Not that they “should” or “shouldn’t,” but hey, if you want to know how to do it, there it is. So there, you hatemongering ideological thugs.

      • Aimee McGee

        Oh for FS! I was taught the hover method by my mother when I was 3…
        Super advanced skill is peeing standing and knowing where on your abdomen to push to direct the stream!

      • Jalon Cain

        On a side note, some years ago a feminist group at the University of Stockholm ran a campaign to ban urinals from male toilets, with the reasoning that because women can’t pee while standing (apparently some can), then men shouldn’t be allowed to do so either. Thus, peeing while standing was declared to be “sexist”.

    • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

      And all that after we’d switched to Disqus. There was absolutely no barrier and no excuse not to take up their points in the comments section of that article other than, of course, the utter cowardice of all bullies everywhere.

    • driversuz

      *Looks left.*
      *Looks right.*
      Don’t see them. Should we tweet ‘em and invite ‘em over? Here’s a hashtag we could use:

      @chickenshitfemthugs

  • Bewildered

    Enough is enough ! It’s high time people asked them to shut the fuck up and stop being control freaks.
    Sheesh! It’s time to start a “Take back male peeing” campaign !

    • StrengthMRA

      I pee standing up with pride! Love the pic! :P

      • Bewildered

        Carry on ! brother. Proudly aim it higher and farther and let the world know that you won’t take its shit sitting down like a pussy !

        • StrengthMRA

          You know it!

    • Draugo

      So because I don’t pee standing up I’m not a real man and I’m a pussy…? Fuck you fucktard.

      • John Narayan

        I don’t think we are pissing into the wind here. It’s never to late to change mate.

        • Bewildered

          Yep! whether you pee standing up,sitting down,upside down or in any other position you fancy, the choice is entirely yours,never,ever,never,ever…………….forget that !
          FUCK THE IDEOLOGUES AND THEIR PATHETIC SIMPS say no to TYRANNY

      • Bewildered

        It’s very surprising to note that you missed the plot by a mile and the irony is you are calling me a fucktard ,you awesome genius !

  • Aimee McGee

    Thomas, having spent time with 3 men in the 1% (brother, nephew-in-law & partner) for mathematical attainment, I know first hand how differently wired they are. Funniest bit is their fields are all so different, they can only grasp conceptually what the other does without resorting to whiteboards.
    I am in full agreement we need to encourage the physicality of learning for math. My partner recently demonstrated some calculus to me through a game of ball and I was like “damn it, couldn’t someone have done this with me at 15, so I could have continued doing physics?”
    I will continue to be happy with my language acuity, but also gain pleasure learning to “think like a man” by learning calculus via experiments

  • http://caprizchka.wordpress.com Caprizchka

    To be a female and top of one’s class for math was to invite scorn and
    ridicule from other girls–the “thought police” of public schools
    everywhere. But I had great tutors–my grandparents–both of them. I don’t believe that “reform” of the compulsory public school system is even possible. Math, on the other hand, does not require a public employee to impart it–it can be learned directly from books. No wonder it is “the enemy” of the thought police, career “educators”, and totalitarian thought advocates everywhere. Feminists are clearly the most dangerous to the future of human thought and seem to aim to turn us all into compliant-thinking livestock with no head for statistics, economics, indices, or following-the-money.

    • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

      Exactly, when (always) the system fails, teach your kids yourself.

  • Markos Diario

    a teacher in the 3rd grade told us that the only thing different between men and women was mens muscles .that was more than 30 years ago..

  • JinnBottle

    One of the best articles I’ve read on this site, Professor, and that’s saying a lot. A helluva lot.

    A sector of the essay in which I think you actually undermined your own argument: Yes, I used to think that women were better “communicators”, too. But what do we make of a gender that not only cannot provide rebuttal in logical terms (aka the terms of the contention), but that cannot help but devolve to attempts to shame with worn-out cliches and slogans, and shrieking hate mail.

    …Did someone say women are more “emotionally intelligent” than men? Well, maybe more intelligent, as a rule, than this man (q.v. gravitar, left); but, even emotionally, they are to the Professor as hyenas to a computer.

    • Raopak Bolo

      The “emotional intelligence” thing is mainly postmodernist pseudoscientific trash. They’re taking empathy and making it out to be some form of intelligence or something. It’s just sad.

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

        Do you mean that you’ve never noticed how some people have extremely poor awareness and understanding of the emotions of their own and others, where others understand emotion significantly better? Have a look at psychological typology some time. _NF_s tend to be far better at what is loosely termed “EQ” than _ST_s (the underscore representing unspecified letters).

        That’s not to say, of course, that some don’t take Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences too far, of course. Pop psyche is a mixed blessing.

        Don’t underestimate empathy. It is a powerful tool and, in the hands, of a sociopath, an extremely dangerous one.

      • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

        Empathy is important.
        As a man with a lot of empathy, I fail to see how that’s a womanly trait though, it may be that I subconsciously want to protect my masculinity or something —

    • Pvblivs

      In fairness, I have seen women provide rebuttal in logical terms. They just weren’t feminists.

  • Grant

    I have enjoyed both of your articles. Indeed I myself didn’t really like math until I got to graduate school and started to play with it. I think any kid could come up with a model for flight of a ball in motion, have them figure out what variables would be in play give them some coefficient estimates and have them predict and practice some balls. Hell, you could even make it a competition by pointing out that the more consistent your force and aim the closer you’ll get to your theoretical target. That sounds like a great way to learn math!

  • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

    (Rapid) task switching is what computer operating systems do, but that’s only because there are very few computational units relative to the number of tasks a modern operating system runs concurrently.

    Neurons in a human brain, on the other hand, aren’t limited in that way. Any neuron can and will fire (given the right stimuli/action potential) at any time. The human brain is doing an awful lot of things concurrently: regulating autonomous functions (including heartbeat, gut peristalsis, iris, breathing, balance), filtering stimuli (especially auditory and touch), emotional response, all sorts of things. A seizure is what you get when too many fire at once.

    In the context of this article, Impelluso is talking about the corpus callosum, the thick bundle of nerve fibres that joins the two hemispheres. Women do, indeed, have a thicker corpus than men do (on average), and that lends certain cognitive advantages. The similarities between male and female brains massively outweigh the differences, however, and you shouldn’t under-estimate the effect that socialisation has on how a particular person develops (or the interaction between nature and nurture.)

    • Daniel Qian

      Everything that you say is true, but the only way for most people to do more things at once is by building them into automatic habits. Only the top 2.5% of multitaskers, called supertaskers, can actually split their attention and remain effective. However, going by the number of people who text and drive, over 96% of the people who think that they can do it are wrong.

      What’s more, the Dunning-Kruger effect means that the ones who are worst at multitasking are the most likely to overestimate their ability. For the sake of your own safety and everyone else’s, the rational thing to do is assume that you are not a supertasker.

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

        Consciously? Agreed. And especially agreed re. driving-and-texting.

        Interestingly, I’ve found that when I’m working, the sort of music I can listen to depends on what it is that I’m actually doing. Writing English prose, I can’t have anything with lyrics in it (even lyrics in a foreign language), but writing code, I can. It seems that the bit of my brain that writes English is a different part of the brain that writes C, VHDL or Python. So one’s ability to ‘multi-task’ seems to depend on what those tasks are.

        It’d be fascinating to look at a BOLD plot (fMRI) of me doing each task.

        • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

          Well if you had logic and language mixed, your brain would explode or your code would suck mightily ;) Interesting remark though, I believe it’s the same for me – some tasks I just have to switch the music off.

    • Peter Wright

      Socialization is to the growth of brain phsiology as the Japanese bonsai-master is to a minature bonsai shrub. The physical results reflect environmental force – expanding or atrophying various parts of the brain, often irreversibly.

      I wager if we raised boys to verbally communicate as much as girls then they would grow corpus callosai the thickness of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s thigh. :-)

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

        That’s an interesting hypothesis, they may indeed. It ought to be possible to correlate corpora callosa (Latin is a bastard!) with self-reported communication skills, “emotional intelligence” and other “left-right” brain skills, but I guess the MRI time would be expensive.

        (Caveat: the left-right brain dichotomy is an example of what Sir Terry Pratchett would call “a useful lie” or “lies-to-children” in terms of public understanding.)

        • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

          Actually the MRI time you can get for free if you do it as a student in neuropsy.

          • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

            I expect that’s true if you have a good research reason, but they’re not toys and machine operators don’t seem likely to let you do shit solely because it’d be interesting.

            (Though they’re terrifically expensive to buy, install and set up, I’m not sure what actual running costs they have. Once the magnets are at temperature and the field is, er, charged (for want of a better word), how much power do MRIs use? I imagine the main running cost is employing the radiologist.)

          • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

            Well they’re probably expensive to maintain, but yes the power costs are mostly irrelevant, it takes a whole lot of power to even rack up a full dollar in electricity.
            As I said, last year students in psychology get access to that shit, I would guess it only takes you meeting 500 of them to have one doing it. Try ;)

    • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

      Actually nothing does rapid task switching.
      Context switching is horribly expensive for a computer system, just as it is for the human brain, and for the same reasons.
      We tend to feel it more because we naturally work with much more memory than computers do (and that’s the biggest part of the work of task switching, i.e. moving memory around), but I don’t know of any system that can really do it effortlessly.

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

        There’s not much more to a process (context) switch than saving and restoring the CPU registers and the page table pointers to/from the relevant PCBs (process control block) and flushing the I cache, D cache and TLB (translation lookaside buffer, where page table entries are cached). No memory is moved around as such.

        The thing that makes a context switch expensive relative to a thread switch is having to flush all the caches, but that’s not as expensive as moving memory around.

        By ‘rapid’ I meant the 1-10 ms interrupt frequency that governs the minimum frequency with which process switching happens. That’s rapid in human time scales, but roughly 7 decimal orders of magnitude slower than instruction execution time.

        In practice, context switches happen more frequently than the timer interrupt would require, because processes usually get switched away by some blocking syscall before they can use their entire time slice.

        • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

          I would refer you to a latency diagram but I think you’ve already seen it.

          Main point being, you are vastly underestimating the working set of a brain process.

          It never fits in registers.
          It will probably not fit in L1 cache.
          It most likely doesn’t even fit in L3 cache.
          And in some cases, it’s even beyond RAM limits.

          I wouldn’t call L3 access fast tbh, and I don’t think we’re particularly slower at that than computers, it’s just that we only ask computers for incredibly simple things, so of course they seem fast.

          Then, of course, the number of context switches is extremely relevant to actual performance vs theoretical throughput, and it’s horribly bad both for humans and computers to switch too often.

          • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

            Everything is relative. L3 (those systems that have it) is faster than memory, and memory is quite a bit faster than memory mapped PCI registers (which can be as bad as microseconds). 3 decimal orders of magnitude difference, before you even consider the latency of peripherals like disc and network. In the general case, context switching is a good thing because it allows a computer to do things it otherwise couldn’t. It’s only bad if done to excess. Like I said, in practice, context switches happen at a rather faster rate than mandated by design because there’s no alternative.

            From what I know of neurobiology, the analogy between the brain and a computer is, at this level, a poor one. I doubt anybody could satisfactorily define what a brain’s working set is because, so far as I know, we simply don’t know enough in detail about how cognition or memory works.

            Brains don’t deal in discrete packets of data in the same way and aren’t centralised (nor have the related memory hierarchy) in the same way as a computer. The ‘architecture’ (if that’s the word) is profoundly different. What is simple for one is complex for the other (contrast natural-language processing versus computational fluid dynamics). Humans can do some things lightning fast and visa versa. Also, since computers are man-made, they are (largely) understood by man in a way that only the ‘designer’ (if such existed) of the human brain could so, naturally, computers seem simple to us compared with brains.

            (To be fair, computers are my profession, neurobiology isn’t.)

          • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

            Well, no matter what your beliefs, it is my experience that we have some kind of working set and that it has a loading time, evidence for this is that some intellectual work like programming requires you to get in the code, load up your virtual state machine in your head, and then only start working on stuff, which when working on the more complex or forgotten bits, can mean a few minutes or more before the mental model is complete and you can start working on it.

            I suspect this has a lot to do with the actual complexity of our mental models rather than with the minimal complexity of the source information, which is mostly what we use in computers.

            I don’t know of anything that computers can really do faster than humans, as much as I don’t know any humans who have spent their whole lives training their brain to do Vector Processing, so this is really all theory.

            I think that comparisons will start making sense when computers can do comparable actions, and we’re still a while off on that, considering the current state of public knowledge AIs.

            Either way, L3 is present in every computer these days and apparently it’s between 15 and 60 cycles worst case, and 60 to 240 for DRAM, absolutely less than I would have expected, I was definitely off on that.

            Definitely good news though.

            http://blog.tsunanet.net/2010/11/how-long-does-it-take-to-make-context.html

            It’s indeed insanely expensive, especially if you consider processes as complex as those in the human brain.

          • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

            Dude, I already gave you an example: CFD. Another is signal processing and, for that matter, vector math. It’s not that humans can’t do these things, but with the best will in the world, humans don’t hold a candle to the speed, cost and efficiency with which computers do all these things.

            As for context switching, 3-5 microseconds in 10 milliseconds is “insanely expensive” is it?

          • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

            I’m really doubtful on CFD and signal processing, I just think nobody has ever tried to wire their brains that way, therefore we lack a comparison.

            With regards to the perception of time, your HFT trade is dominated by external latencies, which are part of the worst latencies in the world of computing so I’d rather use cycles which are a reasonable time/work unit.

            To put it into perspective, fourty million cycles is a lot of processing time.

    • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

      If women had any serious advantage in multi-tasking, there would be much more of a female presence in the Starcraft (II) scene, don’t you think ? And in the Chess scene. And …

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com/ David King

        Only if they also want to. There are lots of things I’m good at doing that I don’t want to do.

        • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

          Indeed. But there would still be at least anecdotal evidence, if not a continuous stream of interested people.

  • Andybob

    ‘Men, Math and Masculinity (Part 1)’ is one of the most brilliant articles that AVfM has ever published. The challenging concepts were presented in terms that laymen could understand. The personal anecdote that was woven through the central argument was completely relevant and provided both humour and clarity.

    It is obvious that Mr Impelluso has been shaken by the experience of being savagely targeted by feminist ideologues who have used their well-practiced tactics of intimidation and smear. It has led him to suspect that some of the feminist bullies may have misunderstood or misinterpreted some of the points he presented. This is nonsense. Those ideological thugs never made any effort to understand his points at all – people like that never do. Their only interest was to shut him down.
    I
    hope that Mr Impelluso realizes that the virulence of their antics is proof that they must feel very threatened indeed by everything he had to say. He should be very proud of it indeed.

  • impelluso

    Well, thanks, everyone…

    I have to admit, the response on some of those sites was amazing. It did shake me up.

    But I am over it.

    Can I share a story of how I taught my daugther some math? Then I will share what some of the feminists said about this. You will be shocked.

    My daughter and I were sitting on the couch and I asked her what 1 times 1 was. She answered.
    I asked her: 2 times 2. She answered 4.
    I asked her 3 by 3. She got it.
    And we continued…
    11 times 11 began the difficulty. So I used sets of numbers and explained a trick and she got it.
    Then she got 12, 13, all the way up to 19 times 19: IN HER HEAD.

    Then we drew a graph of what this looked like: it was a parabola.

    Then I told her to go outside, throw ten rocks in the air and come back in and describe the shape.

    After she described it, I turned the parabola upside down. And she saw the same shape.

    So my daughter gained an intutiive feeling of what a parabolic trajectory is.

    Now get this: she is in the FOURTH GRADE.

    And do you know what those feminists told me when I explained I did this? They said:

    “I do not want this guy teaching my daughter math. All he does is tell girls to throw rocks.”

    • Turbo

      “I do not want this guy teaching my daughter math. All he does is tell girls to throw rocks.”

      It is mind blowing how stupid feminists can be. I would wager that the vast majority of them know nothing about math, or even rocks for that matter. I think you may have lost the audience when you said parabola, their eyes just started to glaze over.

      They don’t teach such things in gender studies.

  • jamie

    the whole ‘gender is a social construct’ has been debunked many times– most notably though–AT ONE DAY OLD boys gravitate towards abstract shapes while girls gravitate towards faces…… http://www.math.kth.se/matstat/gru/5b1501/F/sex.pdf

    • Estwald

      Nurture is not an alternative to nature; nurture is nature.

      • jamie

        i think i getcha. are you saying that nurturing is a biological imperative therefore *even* nurture IS part of our nature??

        • Estwald

          Exactly!

          • jamie

            Sound!

  • http://ludovicurbain.blogspot.be/ Ludovic Urbain

    You are still way too kind in your discourse to be objective.

    The truth is, from a purely genetical standpoint, men are more varied than women.

    And that’s it.

    There will always be some men who are worse than the worst woman, and some who are better than the best woman.

    And there will, from time to time, be a woman who can trade intellectual blows with the best men, because that’s statistics for you.

    It remains that:

    1. A man will often be the best.
    2. On average, women and men are equal-ish at most things.
    3. Education makes the difference between top 50% and top 1%, whether you’re male or female.

    I don’t think girls are naturally handicapped at math, I think that we have culturally pushed them away from that role, and the very low (compared to the very top) level of math required to complete even a PhD in Math or Physics is accessible to 99% of the population, both male and female, provided adequate education and training (which most people will never get).

    So if you have a daughter, EXPECT her to be good at math. No excuses, no hand holding, treat her like a boy and don’t ever let her think she has any excuse to be mediocre in mathematics.

    Overall, I think it’s rather ridiculous to see a majority of average people who never even tried to make it to the top discuss the particularities of the .001% of people who actually won the race to the top.

    In the end, in 99.999% of the cases, if you aren’t good enough it’s not because of your gender or your DNA, it’s just because you’re not trying hard enough and the person you compare to is.