Re: political correctness according to Hugo de Garis

Kathryn Aegis (
Sun, 5 Jan 1997 15:33:22 +0000

David McFadzean:
>I don't want to seem like I'm defending de Garis's views, but he doesn't
>disagree with anything you have said. He says that if women have been
>underrepresented historically because the Man has been keeping them down,
>then we should have seen an increase in the proportion of female geniuses
>in last 30 years. But he claims they still represent around 5%.

Get me into a room with him and watch the fur fly!
I'll try to be brief, just mention some points I would bring up:

--Despite some very real progress in Western countries, women as a
global whole are still systemically excluded from most academic fora,
especially in the sciences. Those that do get admitted to this fora find
their work almost routinely ignored, discredited, dismissed. (Some
interesting court cases working their way through the U.S. system right
now pertaining to academia) As Simon Levy said to me over dinner two
nights ago, academia for better or worse progresses much slower than
other areas of society, and their resistance to women's contributions will
take much longer to overcome.

--What measures and/or instruments is de Garis using to measure genius.
Is he relying on IQ scores, achievement, reputation? I would love to see a
breakdown of IQ scores by gender differential. Is his sample size
global in nature or is he focusing specifically on Western countries?

--Having genius potential is one thing, having the opportunities and
resources to develop it quite another. Women in traditional societies
face substantial barriers regarding leisure time, access to education,
etc. In industrial societies, it is only in the past decade that
an examination has been undertaken of the effectiveness of
educational systems in encouraging and promoting female students.

--I would shift blame away from The Man or Men and focus on
power/political/cultural systems and the way both males and females
are trained from birth to follow different tracks and different modes
of thinking. It could very well be the case that female geniuses are
expressing that genius ability in modes not presently valued. If we
accept the concept of different types of intelligence (creative,
practical, computational, etc.) we might also accept the possibility
of different types of geniuses.

Hum, well, I think that's enough for now!

Kathryn Aegis