The Sexual Paradox: Men, Women and the Real Gender Gap

The Sexual Paradox: Men, Women and the Real Gender Gap

Susan Pinker

Language: English

Pages: 352

ISBN: 0743284704

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Now available in paperback from psychologist and award- winningcolumnistSusanPinker, the groundbreaking and contro- versial book that is “lively, well- written...important and timely” (The Washington Post).

In   this   “ringing   salvo in the sex-difference   wars” (The New York Times Book Review),  Pinker  examines  how fundamental sex differences play out over the life span. By comparing   fragile   boys   who succeed  later  in  life  with  high- achieving   women   who   opt out  or  plateau  in  their  careers,

Pinker turns several assumptions upside down: that women and men are biologically equivalent, that intelligence is all it takes to succeed, and that women are just versions of men, with identical interests and goals. In lively prose, Pinker guides readers through the latest findings in neuro- science and economics while addressing these questions: Are males the more fragile sex? Which sex is the happiest at work? Why do some male

college dropouts earn more than the bright girls who sat beside them in third grade? The answers to these questions are the opposite of what we expect.

A provocative and illuminating examination of how and why learning and behavioral gaps in the nursery are reversed in the boardroom, this fascinat- ing book reveals how sex differ- ences influence career choices and ambition. Through the stories of real men and women, science, and examples from popular culture, Susan Pinker takes a new look at the differences between women and men.

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what their female graduates were doing, nor would they reveal how much their institution was spending on gender equity programs. David Sloan Wilson and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, “Health and the Ecology of Altruism,” in Altruism and Health, ed. Stephen G. Post (New York: Oxford, 2007). 11. Paul C. Light, “The Content of the Nonprofit Workforce,” Nonprofit Quarterly 9, no. 3 (2002); Louise Mailloux, Heather Horak, and Colette Godin, “Motivation at the Margins: Gender Issues in the Canadian

These neurological trade-offs might explain why men like Andrew and Daniel are jinxed in the classroom but can find success at work. The most cited example of a superachiever who struck out in the classroom is Albert Einstein, notorious for being late to talk and at best, a mediocre student. There’s always a danger that someone of his stature will be co-opted by an interest group anxious to identify with its adoptive mascot’s promise. But in Einstein’s case it’s not implausible that a man whose

interact as if in a Rube Goldberg-like machine—each element affecting the other, sometimes changing it forever. Those are rats and we’re humans, you might say. Rats don’t know much about the Mommy Wars—whether to consider children’s needs first, or take a much-vaunted promotion. While it’s hard to infer empathy in rats, there are hormonal and neural pathways that are common to all mammals. A mechanism that allows a human mother and infant to transmit their emotional states to each other would

park or read the obituaries. The fragility of males is even more exaggerated in developing countries, where being male is the single largest risk factor for early death.10 Take, for example, the teenage boys called train surfers in Soweto, who tempt death by practicing stunts on top of moving locomotives, limboing under bridges, hopping from car to car, and doing “the gravel”—dragging their heels along the ground while hanging from a moving train. At the funeral of one of his friends who died

the authors write—an interesting observation given that women’s lower rates of material success are usually attributed to outside forces. Unlike aggression, which normally decreases as children age, the researchers found that risk-taking increases as boys reach adolescence and young adulthood.27 This would contribute to the widening gender gap just as men and women are choosing their careers—creating the paradox of young men who drink, party, and drop out of school at one extreme, versus men who

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