Saturday, May 28, 2011

Neurosexism is compulsory!

Not long ago I was chatting in a casual setting with another mum, of about the same age as me (40-something). We had never met before. We talked about a variety of things, but there appeared to be a theme running through the conversation, that women are essentially more decent and moral beings than males. This appeared to be her belief, and she made it clear that she believed that there was solid evidence to support at least one aspect of her beliefs. I refused to buy the idea of female moral superiority, and I think my refusal might have upset the other lady.

This is a type of conversation that I have been involved with many times over the years whenever I have joined social get-togethers of mothers of primary school-aged children. Girls or women seem to be regarded as superior in one way or another. My recent conversation was the most explicit presentation of the "women are more moral" idea, but it seems to be a common belief among women. I don't buy it, for two reasons. Firstly, I don't believe that the study of this stuff has adequately separated the effects of sociological factors from biological factors, and secondly, when we assert that one gender has a natural advantage in morality, it lets the other gender "off the hook". If being an outsider from the society of Australian mothers is the price that I have to pay for refusing to believe in or going along with ideas of gender moral superiority, then that is a price that I am willing to pay. I never enjoyed the company of stupidity anyway.

(While I was writing this piece I was listening to the ABCTV show Big Ideas in which some authority figure speaker spoke about the "dangers of testosterone" and gender differences in accidental deaths and gender differences in immune function. There is no escaping the rubbishing of maleness!)


usethebrainsgodgiveyou said...

I'm a perfect example that the devil wears SAS's. (Comfy shoes made in America.)

Lili Marlene said...

I'm right into those faitly expensive comfy shoes that you buy at the chemist. My feet are comfy but my conversations are not. Life is too short for sore feet and evasive politeness.