Ideas

The Gender Trap, Part 1

For the past 20 years we've been hearing the claims from pop psychology to neuroscience: men and women, boys and girls, have different brains. The books are plentiful: Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, The Female Brain, The Essential Difference. The idea that males and females are hard-wired to learn differently, making them better suited for specific professions,...
Detail from the cover of "Pink Brain Blue Brain" by Lise Eliot, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
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For the past 20 years we've been hearing the claims from pop psychology to neuroscience: men and women, boys and girls, have different brains. The books are plentiful: Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, The Female Brain, The Essential Difference. The idea that males and females are hard-wired to learn differently, making them better suited for specific professions, has taken hold.  Yet some neuroscientists and psychologists believe this leads to unhealthy gender stereotyping.  IDEAS producer Mary O'Connell explores the debate.



Books and Related Websites

Delusions of Gender by Cordelia Fine, published by W.W. Norton and Company, 2010.

Real Boys' Voices by William Pollack, Penguin Books, 2001.
 
The Female Brain by Louann Brizendine, published by Morgan Road Books, 2006.

Pink Brain, Blue Brain by Lise Eliot, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009.

The Bully, The Bullied and the Bystander by Barbara Coloroso, published by Harper Collins, 2004.

Why Gender Matters by Leonard Sax, published by Doubleday, 2005.

Packaging Girlhood by Sharon Lamb and Lyn Mikel Brown, St. Martins Griffin, 2007.

Cinderella Ate My Daughter by Peggy Orenstein, published by Harper Collins, 2011.

The Truth About Girls and Boys by Rosalind Barnett, Caryl Rivers, published by  University of Columbia Press, 2011.

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