Re: Gender importance (was Future Relationships)

Scott Badger (
Fri, 23 Apr 1999 19:26:40 -0500

Eliezer wrote:

> Well, I took the test.
> I'd like to apologize for this heinous act to those members of this list
> who have the misforture to be a female in a late-twentieth-century
> English/American culture.
> The apology is for actually taking the test, and marking off items like
> "self-reliant" or "placatory" without thinking anything other than
> "these terms aren't very well-defined, sounds like more New Age

> On the other hand, when it struck me - about an hour later - that
> categories like "self-reliant" were being categorized as "male" while
> "placatory" was supposed to be "female", I screamed and threw my monitor
> across the room, having realized the breath-taking magnitude of the
> casual stereotyping. Thus I have no intention whatsoever of saying what
> my scores were.

Oh brother.

Once again, this instrument has been used by respected academicians in hundreds of studies that have appeared in scores of peer-reviewed journals. Apparently, your insight never occured to them.

The author of this instrument was fully aware that the descriptors were stereotypes. The explicit purpose of the instrument was to assess the degree to which an individual endorses attributes _traditionally_ associated with males or _traditionally_ associated with females. Self-Reliance is _traditionally_ considered to be a masculine trait. But there's no value judgment offered here. No one is saying that's how it should be, and only you appear outraged.