Let’s Say Good-Bye To The Straw-Feminist by Cordelia Fine
I would really hope that the reader of this blog post clicks on the link I am providing to this editorial, because the few excerpts I provide don’t do it justice.
(Your primer about me: I’m an ex-Republican who is a moderate conservative who disagrees with feminists on some topics but who agrees with them on others.)
I typically try not to excerpt too much from an author’s page, but sometimes, it’s hard for me to know when and where to stop quoting, if a page or article is so very good. This is one of those times.
Let’s Say Good-Bye To The Straw-Feminist by Cordelia Fine, published in 2011
“This was not a permissible hypothesis”.
That was social psychologist Jonathan Haidt’s recent explanation of the outrage that followed Lawrence Summers’ speech at a conference on the under-representation of women in science and engineering, in which he suggested that women are on average intrinsically less capable of high-level mathematical and scientific thinking.
Haidt’s depiction of the way in which scientific thinking can be distorted by “sacred values”, and his portrayal of Lawrence Summers as the victim of censorious political correctness, evoke two familiar protagonists in the sex differences debate. There’s the hero, who doesn’t let political values get in the way of the search for scientific truth. And then, there’s the villain of the piece.
That bogeywoman – the truth-fearing feminist – haunted me during a photo shoot I endured shortly after my book, Delusions of Gender, was published last year.
…In the interminable sex differences debate it always seems to be those who are critical of scientific claims of essential differences who are accused of allowing political desires to blinker them to the facts of the case.