Gender differences hard-wired
A new study has come out that finds men and women think differently.
According to The Independent, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania used a new and very precise brain-scanning technique, diffusion tensor imaging, to create a neural map of the human brain.
The technique has found that male and female brains are wired differently.
“Researchers found that many of the connections in a typical male brain run between the front and the back of the same side of the brain, whereas in women the connections are more likely to run from side to side between the left and right hemispheres of the brain,” reports The Independent.
Why is this important?
Because “the brain could play an important role in understanding why men are in general better at spatial tasks involving muscle control, while women are better at verbal tasks involving memory and intuition.”
Which reminds me of my sister Lisa's favorite joke: “Men are only good for one thing! But who cares about parallel parking, anyway!”
The fact of the matter is that men and women are and always have been wired differently. It's written in our DNA.
Women tend to be more intuitive than men. Ragini Verma, a professor of radiology at the University of Pennsylvania, told The Independent why.
“Because the female connections link the left hemisphere, which is associated with logical thinking, with the right, which is linked with intuition, this could help to explain why women tend to do better than men at intuitive tasks,” she said. “Intuition is thinking without thinking. It's what people call gut feelings. Women tend to be better than men at these kinds of skills, which are linked with being good mothers.”
In this nutty world, it is considered sexist, in some places, to compliment a woman for being a good mother — or to insist that mothers have some unique parenting skills that fathers likely lack.
But don't ask me, ask humorist Dave Barry, whom I will now paraphrase: The difference between fathers and mothers is that mothers are far less likely to drive off with the baby still sitting on the roof of the car.
Many other studies over the years have gained insight into the differences between men and women.
Take dust. Whereas the male brain is more wired for navigating outdoor activities, such as hunting woolly mammoths, the female brain is wired to notice more sensory detail. Men are less likely to notice dust, which, women tell me, is a mix of fine particles that settle on furniture.
Listening offers another important distinction between men and women. One brain imaging study shows that men listen with only one side of their brain, whereas women use both. (Women would be shocked if they knew everything we use half a brain to do.) Since women listen using several regions on both sides of their brain, they are more likely to remember things — in particular, every single wrong thing we men have ever said or done.
The Independent reports that the brain-mapping technology used in the University of Pennsylvania study will not only help understand differences between men and women, but also provide more insight into neurological disorders, which are often gender-related.
It's a grand thing that modern researchers continue to make strides into human biology and behavior. It's just too bad that we need studies to affirm what most of us have always known to be true.
Men and women are different — and we should celebrate our differences rather than pretend they are not so.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Polamalu enters training camp as Steelers’ longest tenured player
- Interest high for Heinz Field soccer match
- 3 identified in Route 66 crash near Delmont
- Pirates notebook: Recovering Cole exceeds expectations in simulated game
- Obamacare enrollees strain Medicaid in Oregon
- Starkey: Pirates, Burnett could work again
- Care for our children first
- Fayette woman dies in fall from ATV on National Pike
- Late afternoon fire destroys Manor home
- Ariz. inmate’s execution apparently botched
- Walker: Latrobe gets ready to welcome Steelers back to camp