The Science Behind: Gender Discrimination

Updated: Feb 23

Gender equality is seen as "women empowering women," which, as wonderful as it is, does not define "gender equality."


Yes, lower incomes, condescending looks, and "The Man" roles have mostly affected women, but in more ways than we're willing to admit, they affect males as well.


Somehow we've ended up in a society where men have to be aggressive and "masculine" all the time, otherwise they're considered to be weak.


This issue became so prevalent in our society that researchers started to dissect it.


Turns out, there is very little psychological difference between males and females. Janet Hyde, a developmental psychologist studied differences in men and women in cognitive abilities, communication, personality traits, motor skills, and moral reasoning.


78% of her studies revealed very little or no difference in these measures between the two genders. The leftover 22% showed that girls tested slightly higher on spelling and language, and were more agreeable and tender-minded. Boys scored higher on motor skills and aggression.


Here comes the big question: Are these differences really biological?


A study reviewed that if babies, before they're born, are exposed to testosterone, they will have less empathy, more aggression, and different toy preferences than those not exposed.


However, how does this lead to men taking over leadership positions and being the dominant gender in the STEAM field? Last I and many psychologists checked, toy preferences do not give you leadership skills.


That factor is determined by the environment. Many girls are taught to be quiet and blend in the background rather than take control and speak their minds. This "advice" sticks with them their whole lives and discourages them from seizing leadership roles.


On the other hand, while men are taught to be dominant, it prevents them from being open and expressive. Until recently, painting your nails was considered an unmanly activity. As if having glittery blue nail polish was going to hold you back from being a leader.


The same goes for the lack of women in the STEAM field. Women are pushed towards certain fields, certain sports, and certain behaviors that are soft and feminine.


All this is to say that men and women aren't psychologically/biologically different so the term "boys will be boys" is absolutely invalid. It's the way you raise the boy and what you expose him to that really determines what he will be. The same goes for girls.


The moral of the story is that gender equality is not a feminist issue—it's a humanitarian issue.


Even scientists have dusted their hands and said, "It's not genetics' fault—it's society's."


Science is involved in everything, but not always is it the star of the show, or in this case, the villain.


Until next time...


Stay Curious ;)


Love,

Sarah


Sources:

https://hbr.org/2017/08/what-the-science-actually-says-about-gender-gaps-in-the-workplace

https://www.equalrights.org/issue/economic-workplace-equality/discrimination-at-work/


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