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BRAIN SEX

Scott sfelder at nortexinfo.net
Sat Sep 6 15:27:42 EST 1997


Thank you for your reply, Diane.
I have found this book, "Brain Sex", to be a fascinating read.
The book was originally published in England so it's not well known here in
the states.

I have to admit that this book has convinced me there are innate
differences between the male and female brain at birth. When friends
challenge me and say something like "You mean you don't think that the
differences are due to our socialization or how you are raised"? I usually
respond with these questions: "How many women have you heard during your
lifetime with  stuttering speech? If there are *no* innate differences, how
is society socializing some males to stutter or have slurred speech? Why
are  these speech problems almost nonexistent in females? Do you think that
homosexuality is a *choice* or something someone is  *born* with?" They
usually respond with "they are born with this preference." Then my reply is
"If there are no differences at birth, why do male homosexuals out number
female homosexual by something like 4 or 5 to one."

On September 3 here in the U.S. ABC's nation wide program "PRIMETIME LIVE" 
had a topic about babies born with ambiguous genitalia (the doctors at
first sight could not tell the sex of the children). Diane Sawyer asked
"are the doctors playing god?" Many times in the past when a baby was born
with this defect, the specialist recommended reconstructive surgery to the
parents. Even if the baby is genetically a boy with XY genes, many times
the child is given a physical sex change to a female because the surgery is
simpler to do (less complications, I assume. The show didn't point this
out). It was just assumed that you could raise the child to be female and
she would adjust psychologically. After all the popular belief is the
gender in our brains is due to socialization and parenting, isn't it?  

    The show profiled two cases. One was a toddler who is genetically a
male but changed to a female and is now being raised as a girl. They showed
her playing in a room with some toys. The researcher (I believe a
neurologist, I don't recall) said that she was doing typical boy play. She
was playing with the army men and hadn't taken any notice to the dolls.
Something else I noticed, but wasn't mentioned, was that the blocks she was
playing with were stacked to a near toppling hight. In their book, Moir and
Jessel reported that boys usually stack their blocks to those hights while
girls make long low structures with their blocks (coincidence? maybe, maybe
not).

The other case goes back to the 1970's. A set of genetic twins were born,
one a normal boy the other with ambiguous genitalia. It was decided to
change the one with the ambiguity into a female and raise her as a girl. No
one knew this girl was a genetic twin to the other. This case became a
great opportunity for sociology and psychology to study weather gender in
the brain is socialized or innate (and for social engineers to prove gender
behavior is strictly socialized). So there were follow-up social studies
reported in journals on these twins to see how they were developing as they
aged. But as Sawyer reported the studies seemed to fade away and the case
was forgotten. PRIMETIME tracked down this twin who is know an adult and
interviewed him ( notice is said "him"). He described himself as never
feeling right about who he was. That when he was 9 years old he had what he
described as a nervous breakdown. He found himself huddled and trembling
corner of his room . He knew things weren't right about himself. When he
was 14 he himself declared that he was not a "girl", that he was a "boy".
He quit taking the female hormones he was being given and change his
appearance. He has sense undergone what he described as "several painful
reconstructive surgeries". He is now married to a woman and has adopted
children ( he can't father children due to the surgery after birth).

As he said in the interview what gave *them* the right to do this
experiment on him and, that their experiment "was a complete failure", ?

PRIMETIME said they were going to do more follow-ups on this subject in the
weeks ahead.

Like I asked before, if these differences between the male and female brain
are real, why does the public pretend, socially, that they don't exist?
What benefit is it to us? Is it equality? As Moir and Jessel beg the
question: "equality in regards to what?" You're not talking about
perpetuating sexism or glass ceilings. You're talking about admitting
biology. About admitting "truth". 

A lot of times when you bring this subject up, you feel like you get an
idea what it may have been like for Galileo trying to convince the church
that the Earth actually orbits the Sun.

Scott





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