reply to post by JediK
There is a great book you should read that goes into this very thing. It is called: You just don't understand: Conversations between Men and Women. I
highly recommend it, it saves a lot of agnst.
Men communicate for the exchange of information and status. Someone mentioned in a previous post how men tend to one up on things, and this is why.
This is why women can't understand how men can discuss the dissection of an exhaust system on a car for hours. What seems a mundane conversation to
us is actually a fact gathering conversation for a guy to be used for later when putting on a new exhaust.
This is why men tend to be the public speakers, are first to ask questions in a group setting, tend to be the first and majority of callers to a radio
show. By giving or receiving information, you dictate your status.
When in a group setting, generally everyone gives the man their complete attention, why women play a supporting role. Don't believe me? wait till the
next family function. When Dad speaks, everyone stops to listen.But generally(with exceptions) but women don't usually hold the floor and if they do,
it is for a short period of time. The author gives a real life situation where a girl and her two brothers are at dinner with the family, and the
brother is encouraged to tell a story of his bike riding adventure. But when the little girl tries to tell her story, she is quickly talked over and
When women communicate, it if for intimacy and for an exchange of emotions, support, and status but in a different way.
Women achieve status through intimacy. The closer we feel to someone, the higher our status. Hence the clicks in high school. The personal information
we give someone gives them power over them.
Understandadbly, this causes some confusion, and leaving people unhappy.
But armed with this information, the world makes a little more sense.(which is why I highly recommend it)
But this is a perfect example of the difference:
For example, the author touched on this too. My grandfather was very ill. When I told my husband, he said nothing. I thought how callous and cold he
was. I expected him to say: I am sorry honey. This sucks. I wish there was something I could do. He is a great guy.
But I got nothing. I expected a female answer.
But men communicate for knowledge and status, and this situation put him in teh awkward postion of not being able to do either. Men consider their
wives their equals. Showing someone sympathy puts them in a lower status position, and they don't want to do that to their wives. So, he says
So instead of thinking he is a jerk, I now know that in his view, he was trying not to patronize me.
this is why men never ask for directions or go to the doctors, because requesting information from someone puts them in a higher status then the
requester, because they have the information.
Now we do all this everyday unconciously. We dont' consciously make these decisons.
The 64,000 dollar question is(and one that seems to pop up here) is that is this nature or nurture?
Yes, some testosterone could make men more competitive, but whether we realize it or now, all of us contribute and enforce everyday, the gender
But encouraging men to speak in a public setting. By telling our female friends intimate information.
My father taught me how to cook, but never bothered to show me how to throw a football.
Does it mean I am less valuable? no he loves me just as much. But his gender roles are already set in his mind.
But are women naturally more submissive and nuturing then men? or conditioned?
Did I show an aptitude for nurturing? Or conditioned? And I think we will never know unless we go back to adam and eve.
But I think the answer is a little of both.
So is it because of these preset notions that men are encouraged to go to school and travel more? Are they given more opportunities?
Why is women are stil not equal in the workplace now? is it the glass ceiling? oppression? or the fact that women tend to choose benefits over salary?
or that women ask for raises and are less forward about it then men?
Were women conditioned to be submissive and less aggressive since Eve just so man can have control?
Or was it nature's design so we don't compete with our own offspring?
Like the PP said, we are the same, but different.
so in way, since women don't collect information in a conversation, and were not allowed in school. So men may have developed a slightly higher
learning ability, and may have gathered some book smarts. But it does not dictate intelligence or day to day learning. Just like men have had far more
time to develope athletically. Since women are now allowed to participate in athletics, their scores are improving constantly, while men have
And despite that, women still have some abilities that exceeds mens. 6 of one, half a dozen of the other.
as for lagging in the science and engineering departments: Women can learn math and science. I know, I was the leader in science in middle school,
scoring highest on all the tests.
But women LEARN it completely differently. And schools still teach it like how boys learn. It has never changed. Change the premise it is taught, and
females are far more likely to pick it up.
So in a nutshell. There are so many factors, social, economic, genetics, culture, nurture. That it could never be determined or sorted, it is complex.
While in the days when females were not allowed to attend school, some may have learned when no one was looking. The wealthy ones may have had a
private education. You just don't know.
Now the question I would like to know the answer too, is why the need to supress a sex in the first place? When it benfits a society so much to have
both genders educated.