brain sizes: Einstein's and women's

Hope Munro Smith hopems at mail.utexas.edu
Fri Jul 12 19:58:18 EST 2002


In article <3d2f507c.20059553 at news.freeserve.net>,
angilion at ypical.fsnet.co.uk (Angilion) wrote:

> [several groups cut to avoid excessive crossposting]
> 
> On Fri, 12 Jul 2002 15:19:57 -0500, "Shadow Dancer"
> <insomniac at winterslight.org> wrote:
> 
> [..]
> 
> >http://psychclassics.yorku.ca/Thompson/psychsex.htm
> >
> >To Quote:
> >
> >"The most important single contribution to our knowledge of the facts of the
> >case is to be found in Dr. Franklin P. Mall's paper 'On Several Anatomical
> >Characters of the Human Brain Said to Vary According to Race and Sex, with
> >Especial Reference to the Weight of the Frontal Lobe' (Am. J. of Anat., IX.,
> >p. 1, 1909). Dr. Mall's general conclusion is that there is as yet no
> >reliable evidence for the variation of anatomical characters with either
> >race or sex. The belief that the brains of females differ from those of
> >males has been widely accepted, and has been thought to be conclusive
> >evidence of the permanent inferiority of the female mind. 
> 
> That's obviously out of date - the general belief nowdays is that women
> are *more* intellectually capable than men.  Try reading the posts
> John Knight was replying to, for example.  Are you going to
> counter those, or are you one of the many who think that female
> people are innately superior to male people?
> 
> You are going back to 1910 for that paper.  Do you think that's
> actually relevant to today, especially in her conclusions about
> the prevailing belief concerning which sex is mentally superior?

Really, use of such dated material is quite puzzling.

> 
> As an aside, I have seen it hypothesised that brain mass correlates with
> height.  That would neatly explain the average difference in brain
> mass between men and women (as an artefact of the average
> difference in height) and the hypothesis sounds plausible.  However,
> I haven't seen any evidence for it.  Do you have any?
> 

I'd be interested in hearing it as well.  It would make
sense that a larger body would need a larger brain to work
its various systems, which again would prove that brain size
says nothing about intelligence.



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