Reply Mon 7 Mar, 2005 11:49 am
NY Sun article

Put very well by Heather MacDonald:

"This belief in the essential difference between male and female "voices," of course, utterly contradicts the premise of the anti-Lawrence Summers crusade."

If there is no appreciable difference in the way men and women think, why is it necessary to have the Feminine Perspective on anything?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 3 • Views: 4,835 • Replies: 194
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Mon 7 Mar, 2005 12:32 pm
Re: The Feminist Paradox
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
If there is no appreciable difference in the way men and women think, why is it necessary to have the Feminine Perspective on anything?


Reading the link now, but my quick reply to this question is that perspective is a way of looking, not a way of thinking. There are all kinds of perspectives you might want to get -- that of children, the elderly, minorities, college students, etc... In some of these cases there might be inherent differences in thought processes, but that is not necessarily so.

But off to read the rest of the article.
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Mon 7 Mar, 2005 12:36 pm
I read McDonalds piece here http://www.city-journal.org/html/eon_02_24_05hm.html

Interesting to see the feminine harpy side.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 7 Mar, 2005 12:44 pm
The fact that they published a woman's perspective on the stupidity of womens perspectives is pretty funny.

Still, as a woman, I must say that I agree with her on the ridiculous charges of the bean counting "blackmailer".
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 12:39 am
Re: The Feminist Paradox
FreeDuck wrote:
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
If there is no appreciable difference in the way men and women think, why is it necessary to have the Feminine Perspective on anything?


Reading the link now, but my quick reply to this question is that perspective is a way of looking, not a way of thinking. There are all kinds of perspectives you might want to get -- that of children, the elderly, minorities, college students, etc... In some of these cases there might be inherent differences in thought processes, but that is not necessarily so.

But off to read the rest of the article.


It seems to me that in order for there to be a perspective that is identifiable as feminine, the feminine life experience must be so common among all of its members that it generates a shared and consistent way of viewing the world. I have no doubt that there are elements of living one's life as a female that are shared by all females, and to that extent that may very be a legitimate Feminine Perspective, the way there is a legitimate Double Amputee Perspective. However, such perspectives provide insight on only a limited number of topics for which the shared sense of "otherness" can result in a different view.

While a Double Amputee perspective on such subjects as public transportation, conformity within society and pain might very likely provide insight, the Double Amputee perspective on classical music, agricultural policy, or dealing with North Korea is unlikely to provide any valuable insight at all. To assume that Double Amputees share a common view on all possible subjects because of their shared condition would be grossly insulting to them.

So too the so-called Feminine Perspective.

The introduction of a distinction between brain wiring and shared experience goes only a very little way to resolve the paradox that is generated by Feminists who demand that women be given a voice on all topics simply because they are women.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 12:40 am
panzade wrote:
I read McDonalds piece here http://www.city-journal.org/html/eon_02_24_05hm.html

Interesting to see the feminine harpy side.


I'm not sure what you mean by this. Would you please elaborate?

Are you suggesting McDonald is a harpy?
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 12:55 am
0 Replies
 
Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 12:59 am
If the physical differences between men and women are so great as to be visible at 100 yards, then why would it be implausible that there are differences that are not visible, e.g. psychological?
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 01:31 am
panzade wrote:


This is Able2Know after all.

I never assume that anyone's comments conform with my notions of the truth, or the obvious.

Can you not imagine an identical reply that actually was intended to portray McDonald as a harpy?

I apologize for not giving you the benefit of the doubt, but (to your credit) I have not been able to reliably categorize panzade.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 01:39 am
Brandon9000 wrote:
If the physical differences between men and women are so great as to be visible at 100 yards, then why would it be implausible that there are differences that are not visible, e.g. psychological?


Devil's Advocate:

I dare say that you could recognize the difference between a black man and a white man at at least 100 yards, but does that somehow reinforce the notion that there are invisible difference between the races?
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 01:43 am
boomerang wrote:
The fact that they published a woman's perspective on the stupidity of womens perspectives is pretty funny.

Still, as a woman, I must say that I agree with her on the ridiculous charges of the bean counting "blackmailer".


What makes you think they would not have published (essentially) the same article if it had been written by a man?

In any case, I would argue that a woman's perspective is entirely legitimate (and of considerable value) when discussing feminism and any aspect of its application. There is no irony here.
0 Replies
 
Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 06:13 am
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
Brandon9000 wrote:
If the physical differences between men and women are so great as to be visible at 100 yards, then why would it be implausible that there are differences that are not visible, e.g. psychological?


Devil's Advocate:

I dare say that you could recognize the difference between a black man and a white man at at least 100 yards, but does that somehow reinforce the notion that there are invisible difference between the races?

But all you're noticing in that case is one difference - skin pigmentation - unlike what you're seeing in the case of gender. I am saying that if there are so many big, noticeable differences between the genders, one cannot reasonably claim that it is implausible that there are also differences below the surface.
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 07:49 am
The paradox in the article is the feminist's assertion that there is no essential difference between men and women while demanding a feminiine perspective; i.e. if there is no difference then logically there is no feminine persepctive.

There is also the further Catch 22 that a publication must provide a feminine perspective, but if the publication intentionally provides a feminine perspective, the feminists will be seen as beneficiaries of such affirmative action rather than accomplished in their own right.

Of course these same paradoxes apply when it comes to the 'black perspective", "Latino perspective", "Americans with disabilities perspective", "gay persepctive", etc. etc. etc. We're all equal and should be treated equally, yet everybody gets his/her own voice based on 'differences'.

The fact is, I think, there are difference. Larry Summers at Harvard has been crucified by the feminists for asking the question: Is there a difference between men and woman when it comes to math and the sciences? If not, why is there such a disparity between male and female professors and students in these fields? Conversely why is there such a disparity between men and women in the NFL? Why don't you see Japanese in the NBA? Why are there so few blacks on swim teams? Why so few good male secretaraies? Why so few female inventors of world-changing inventions?

I am as feminist as the next person when it comes to equality in hiring practices, but I understand that there are simply some occupations for which men or women are better suited. I am a passionate advocate for equal pay for equal work, but understand that the employee who can give 100% to the job is going to be more valuable than the one who cannot; and it is more likely to be the woman juggling work and responsibility for young children etc. It comes down to choices we make and very often different genders make different choices.

I agree with Brandon that you simply cannot rule out genetics when it comes to many things. I only have to look at little boys and little girls playing with toy cars. Little boys make motor noises. Little girls don't.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 08:03 am
Re: The Feminist Paradox
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
It seems to me that in order for there to be a perspective that is identifiable as feminine, the feminine life experience must be so common among all of its members that it generates a shared and consistent way of viewing the world. I have no doubt that there are elements of living one's life as a female that are shared by all females, and to that extent that may very be a legitimate Feminine Perspective, the way there is a legitimate Double Amputee Perspective. However, such perspectives provide insight on only a limited number of topics for which the shared sense of "otherness" can result in a different view.

While a Double Amputee perspective on such subjects as public transportation, conformity within society and pain might very likely provide insight, the Double Amputee perspective on classical music, agricultural policy, or dealing with North Korea is unlikely to provide any valuable insight at all. To assume that Double Amputees share a common view on all possible subjects because of their shared condition would be grossly insulting to them.

So too the so-called Feminine Perspective.

The introduction of a distinction between brain wiring and shared experience goes only a very little way to resolve the paradox that is generated by Feminists who demand that women be given a voice on all topics simply because they are women.


I agree. I confess that I'm not terribly informed about what feminists are demanding, but assuming you are correct then I agree.

I could get into the whole argument about what Summers said and whether it's true, but I don't think that's what you really started this thread for, so I won't. I will say that when he said what he said, it would have been very easy to refute it with reasonable argument. To show that the differences between male and female in the sciences was a matter of career choice and biological paths in life more than a matter of women's brains being wired in such a way that they are unable to reach the same levels as men. It's possible that there were other women in the room who did this that we've not heard about, but it is very disappointing that at least one woman reacted in the absolutely most ridiculously stereotypically feminine way possible. I think that's what the author was getting at too.
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Mar, 2005 08:09 am
Well intellectual honesty requires that feminists acknowledge the differences that men have seen all along, and thus the feminine perspective is valid. If we are denied our perspective, how in the world will men ever be educated on how superior we are? Smile
0 Replies
 
Chrissee
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Mar, 2005 11:30 pm
Re: The Feminist Paradox
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
NY Sun article

Put very well by Heather MacDonald:

"This belief in the essential difference between male and female "voices," of course, utterly contradicts the premise of the anti-Lawrence Summers crusade."

If there is no appreciable difference in the way men and women think, why is it necessary to have the Feminine Perspective on anything?


Typical right wing strawman argument, the writer extrapolates the rant of one person and globalizes it to represent "the feminist agenda." Of all the hundreds of woman I have known, intellectually as well as carnally, I can't recall one who thought women and men thought alike.

Men are better at math. I guess that is because they have so much practice calculating whether it is 5 and 1/8, 5 and 1/4 or or even 5 and 5/16. They even know how to convert it to decimal ponts!
0 Replies
 
Chrissee
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Mar, 2005 11:31 pm
Caveat: white men.
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Mar, 2005 11:40 am
Tsk tsk.
After reading some great posts from you Chrissee I was disappointed at your groin shot. I could easily turn your attention to women's math prowess in calculating bra sizes and 1/4 pounds but, what's the point.?
We know that females have an ability for math in grade school and they outperform boys in High School. The question is : why don't they keep up in college?
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Mar, 2005 11:48 am
I think the question is fascinating Panzade. I use math, including fractions Smile, every day. Every day math is easy for me, and I can set up a spread sheet and keep a pretty complicated ledger and even do my own taxes. I can't remember getting anything less than an A in math class.

But I don't think in advanced algebra, calculus, physics, trig, etc. I really struggled with statistics class (fairly recently) because I needed that for a project I was working on. I passed it but just barely.

Maybe its because I don't really have an interest in advanced math? I think most women don't? Is that genetics?

I do believe women are generally left brained (more verbally oriented) and men are generally right brained (visually/spacially/graphically) oriented and that could have something to do with it. I would like to know.
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Mar, 2005 11:56 am
I would too. And I think Larry Summers would also.
0 Replies
 
 

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