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8+ Works 1,184 Membros 7 Críticas 2 Favorited

About the Author

Anne Fausto-Sterling is the Nancy Duke Lewis Professor Emerita of Biology and Gender Studies in the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology and Biochemistry at Brown University.

Obras por Anne Fausto-Sterling

Associated Works

The Gender/Sexuality Reader: Culture, History, Political Economy (1997) — Contribuidor — 114 exemplares
Constructing Masculinity (1995) — Contribuidor — 74 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum

Data de nascimento
Vogel, Paula (wife)



An oldish book, somewhat out of date in the scientific field, but unfortunately still up to date in the ideas that are being promoted by the "biology as destiny" crowd. 26 years after this book appeared, the arguments discussed here sound like something I could read in numerous venues today, and they are no more valid now than they were then. The author presents the scientific evidence to support the idea that men and women are dramatically different - none at the time, none now. Oh, there are differences, but these are small and getting smaller, outside the reproductive sphere, of course. Even though some of the ideas she presents and rebuts are not current, others remain behind in different format - the men's and women's brain differences argument is still there, but it is no longer about size or corpus collosum, or whatever...there are new MRI differences supposedly seen, and just as poorly supported. The real strength of this book is the methodology. Using the techniques of scientific inquiry that the author employs in this book, it is possible to evaluate more recent claims, as well, because the logic and rationale of her methods is still sound. And the science behind gender differences remains as murky as it was 26 years ago - 50 years ago - 100 years ago. It also remains as political, with scientists doing their best to find sex differences. That's where the money is, and that is what most people, if they're honest, want to see, because it is familiar, comfortable, and seems like it could be true. This book can shatter comfort zones for those who insist that men and women somehow come from different planets.… (mais)
1 vote
Devil_llama | 1 outra crítica | Jan 5, 2019 |
The original version was printed in the '80s. It's an earlier specimen of a genre, debunking studies that claim to use science to show that women can't do math and to justify social inequities. Quite a few of the ideas are still coming back in 2018.

If it weren't for virulent prejudice this genre would have it easy. Many examples of hilariously idiotic prior pronouncements from the scientific establishment abound and the juicy quotes are easy to find. It seems like many of these books can include a scathing remark about prejudice by John Stuart Mill, a fine source for these things.

What these books generally teach me is:
1. There is a long history of scientific claims for women's inferiority. Any sort of vigorous activity is sure to finish them off pronto, or at least make them unfit for child-rearing, thinking, study of any kind, will make them sterile, etc.
2. Embryology is _so_ complicated and embryological sexual development is intricate.
3. Genetics is _so_ complicated and expression of genes is modulated by so many factors.
4. There have been many studies that purport to show something that are poster children for the cargo cult science metaphor of Richard Feynman.

This book was well written, but I simply can not follow the embryology, so that is lost on me. It avoids symbolic math but does a pretty good job of explaining statistics where necessary.

Written by a pioneer who could write rather well.
… (mais)
themulhern | 1 outra crítica | Jul 27, 2018 |



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