Are men more genial than women ?

  • Thread starter piercas
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Observing history of culture and science leads to some curious facts : geniality seems to be almost an exclusive affair of man : almost all great artist
(such as composers,painters,poets etc...) and great scientists in any domain as well as all great discoveries happen to be man. In addition, have a look at nobelprizes. I am not an antifeminist but the facts are there. Is there a reasonable explanation for those at first sight unreasonable facts?
 

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  • #2
Astronuc
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If geniality means, "Having a pleasant or friendly disposition or manner", then I would say it depends on the individual (effects of personality and environment), and is not gender dependent.

There is also a discussion here on the merits of the differences between male and female humans as related to capability, physiology, nuturing, etc and the cause and effect of the differences.

https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=60270
 
  • #3
selfAdjoint
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piercas said:
Observing history of culture and science leads to some curious facts : geniality seems to be almost an exclusive affair of man : almost all great artist
(such as composers,painters,poets etc...) and great scientists in any domain as well as all great discoveries happen to be man. In addition, have a look at nobelprizes. I am not an antifeminist but the facts are there. Is there a reasonable explanation for those at first sight unreasonable facts?
From your cites I would say you intend "geniality" to mean "having genius". One interesting thing about the history of thought is that as society has progressed from pure patriarchism to substantial rights for women, the number of women of high talent has increased too. Take mathematicians; in the middle ages there was one, Hildegard of Bingen. In the renaisance/early modern period there was one, Mara Agnesi. In the nineteenth century there were two: Sophie Germaine and Sonya Kowalevska, plus Ada Lovelace showed talent. In the twentieth century there were about a dozen first rate women mathematicians. You can match this sequence in literature and painting too.
 
  • #4
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Eysenck and Goldberg on masculinity and genius

Astronuc said:
I would say it depends on the individual ... and is not gender dependent.
There may not necessarily be any masculine/feminine traits that are gender dependent. For example, tallness is a masculine trait yet height is not gender dependent.



Astronuc said:
If geniality means
And here it does not. Thread-starter Piercas used it to mean proclivity toward eminent creativity, or proclivity toward genius. The male sex tends to produce more geniuses than the female sex. This has been observed and commented on by Hans Eysenck in his 1995 book Genius and by Steven Goldberg in his respective 1973 book The Inevitability of Patriarchy. Goldgerg's conclusion was that the female sex so far seems virtually incapable of producing geniuses and that this situation is not open to remedy through social engineering.
 
  • #5
russ_watters
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hitssquad said:
There may not necessarily be any masculine/feminine traits that are gender dependent. For example, tallness is a masculine trait yet height is not gender dependent.
I'm not sure what you mean - men are, on average, significantly taller than women.

In any case, the reason men have contributed more, historically, is quite simple: women virtually everywhere were actively repressed throughout all of human history and in many cases still are. America is one of the more liberal countries, yet our active repression only started to end in the beginning of this century and the remaining social pressure didn't start to ease until WWII.
 
  • #6
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The lack of women genuises has obviously a lot to do with their position in society and lack of exposure to learning.

I did once read though that the standard deviation of IQ for women is smaller than that of men, meaning less women geniuses but also less women retards. I think that they have about the same average IQ, and are slightly better at linguistic things and slightly worse at abstract mathematical reasoning in general. Maybe this is due to conditioning though.
 
  • #7
Gonzolo
piercas said:
Observing history of culture and science leads to some curious facts : geniality seems to be almost an exclusive affair of man : almost all great artist
(such as composers,painters,poets etc...) and great scientists in any domain as well as all great discoveries happen to be man. In addition, have a look at nobelprizes. I am not an antifeminist but the facts are there. Is there a reasonable explanation for those at first sight unreasonable facts?
I think it's like voting, or women in the workplace. Women have the capacity, but the social trends just haven't gotten there yet.
 
  • #8
Astronuc
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The lack of women genuises . . .
Maybe there is no lack of women geniuses - may be they are just not recognized.

Look at what happened to Lise Meitner. She was entitled to the Nobel prize along with Otto Hahn.

And then look at Marie Curie - winner in Chemistry and Physics.

And there are many more brilliant women in the sciences, but there still seems to be a tendency to favor recognition of the achievements of men over those of women.

As for the "proclivity toward eminent creativity, or proclivity toward genius" (archaic meaning of geniality), I would have to say that also depends a lot on the nuturing and other environmental factors, e.g. nutrition.
 
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  • #9
selfAdjoint
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Emmy Noether was one of the most brilliant mathematicians of the early 20th century, and SHE WAS RECOGNIZED AS SUCH. But in spite of Hilbert's backing ("the mind has no sex"), she couldn't get on the faculty at Goettingen. She worked as Hilbert's assistant. When she emigrated to the US she could only get a job at a women's college.

I hold both that the distributions of mathematical talent for men and women are different, leading to fewer women than men with the highest degree of talent, AND that patriarchal traditions still linger in our society and prevent girls who do have high talent from growing up to be mathematicians.
 
  • #10
russ_watters
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selfAdjoint said:
I hold both that the distributions of mathematical talent for men and women are different, leading to fewer women than men with the highest degree of talent, AND that patriarchal traditions still linger in our society and prevent girls who do have high talent from growing up to be mathematicians.
I know that first part got you in some trouble in another thread, so here's how I'd put it (softly): until the patriarchal part is completely rectified, its impossible to know if there are differences in aptitude. Could there be? Certainly.
 
  • #11
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russ_watters said:
I know that first part got you in some trouble in another thread, so here's how I'd put it (softly): until the patriarchal part is completely rectified, its impossible to know if there are differences in aptitude. Could there be? Certainly.
Trouble? I call 'em as I see 'em (INTJ characteristic :biggrin: ).

Impossible to know? The g relationships are definite and don't depend on social structure. It's important to remember that g is distributed statistically (bell curve) and the extremes of the curve are what produces the remarkable talents.
 
  • #12
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The deprived childhood as forger of genius

Astronuc said:
Maybe there is no lack of women geniuses - may be they are just not recognized.
This is addressed by Eysenck and Goldberg.



Astronuc said:
As for the "proclivity toward eminent creativity, or proclivity toward genius" (archaic meaning of geniality)
The M-W Unabridged Dictionary list its fourth definition of genial1 as "displaying or marked by genius <new, genial insights — Susanne K. Langer> <however genial his intuitions may be — George Santayana> <we rarely read T to share some genial vision — Herbert Read>". That dictionary makes special note of archaism when it exists, and it makes no mention of archaism for the definition of genial as "displaying or marked by genius".



Astronuc said:
that also depends a lot on the nuturing and other environmental factors, e.g. nutrition.
The recognized historical geniuses cited by Eysenck who had difficult or deprived childhoods might not have been geniuses otherwise? Perhaps. But what about the historical geniuses who did not have the good fortune to have difficult or deprived childhoods?
 
  • #13
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I think Women just have preferences to Biological discipline than of Physics and chemistry. Obviously, the clear exception is Marie Curie, who got nobel prizes in chemistry AND physics.

Famous biologists include rosalin franklin (i dunno if the name is right - contributer of the discovery of the structure of the DNA by x-ray diffraction)
 
  • #14
piercas said:
are men more genial than women ?
I think you'll find you mean 'genital' :rolleyes:
 
  • #15
plus said:
I did once read though that the standard deviation of IQ for women is smaller than that of men, meaning less women geniuses but also less women retards.
Would any woman retards out there like to comment on this outrageous slur?
 
  • #16
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I meant of course genius instead of genial (I am french speaking) . Does this really have to do with women having been oppressed and not having had access better education troughout the ages. Do we really need education to become genious. I do not think so. Mozart was not genius because of some education. He was born as a genius. Education does not 'create' a genius.
I want women to excuse me : I like them all, even those who are not genius
 
  • #17
piercas said:
I want women to excuse me : I like them all, even those who are not genius
:approve: :approve:
 
  • #18
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Apart from the trivial perhaps even unethical subject of this thread, it strikes me that generally the more sophicated male members of this community hasten themselves to declare it false.

That's encouraging.
 
  • #19
Kerrie
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piercas said:
Observing history of culture and science leads to some curious facts : geniality seems to be almost an exclusive affair of man : almost all great artist
(such as composers,painters,poets etc...) and great scientists in any domain as well as all great discoveries happen to be man. In addition, have a look at nobelprizes. I am not an antifeminist but the facts are there. Is there a reasonable explanation for those at first sight unreasonable facts?
social standards i think, especially many generations ago when women were expected more to be the homemakers and caretakers of family. slowly i believe that is changing.
 
  • #20
selfAdjoint
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Kerrie said:
social standards i think, especially many generations ago when women were expected more to be the homemakers and caretakers of family. slowly i believe that is changing.

There were some women who weren't bound by that custom. Nuns, noblewomen, and girls who had lost their mothers and weren't properly socialised as "women" in that culture. It is signficant that this was the group that produced such mathematical, artistic and scientific genius as womanhood showed before the enlightenment loosened things up aa bit.
 
  • #21
Les Sleeth
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selfAdjoint said:
Trouble? I call 'em as I see 'em (INTJ characteristic :biggrin:)

Impossible to know? The g relationships are definite and don't depend on social structure. It's important to remember that g is distributed statistically (bell curve) and the extremes of the curve are what produces the remarkable talents.
What do you think of the theory that there are different sorts of g?
 
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  • #22
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Les Sleeth said:
What do you think of the theory that there are different sorts of g?
What theory is that?
 
  • #24
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Gardner's endorsement of a unitary factor of human mental ability

Les Sleeth said:
Gardner does not say that there are several g's. He indirectly said there was only one g when he said a minimum IQ of about 120 was necessary for genius.


"Gardner gives biographical analyses of each of these famous creative geniuses to illustrate his theory of multiple "intelligences" and of the psychological and developmental aspects of socially recognized creativity. When I personally asked Gardner for his estimate of the lowest IQ one could possibly have and be included in a list of names such as this, he said, 'About 120.' This would of course exclude 90 percent of the general population, and it testifies to the threshold nature of g. That is, a fairly high level of g is a necessary but not sufficient condition for achievement of socially significant creativity." (Arthur Jensen. The g Factor. p128.)
 
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  • #25
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So far I've only seen you and Mandrake quote from _The g Factor_.

What Gardner says or does not say isn't relevant to what is or is not true. Make your own argument. I do agree in this case that a minimum general intelligence is necessary, but it can easily be channeled into one area or another area at the fair exclusion of other areas. If someone who is recognized as a genius has an IQ that only puts him in the 90th percentile, then there's probably something wrong with the IQ test.


Autistic savants, by the way, may have low IQs but high abilities in certain areas, e.g. for music. It's conceivable that an autistic savant with an IQ of 80 but with a musical talent could become recognized as a genius.
 
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