Getting Heard

Eric Grunden egrunden at
Thu Jan 18 02:17:14 EST 1996

In a previous article, spallas at (Sarah L. Pallas) says:

>So the questions are :
>1)  How does one get HEARD in male groups?
>2)  How does one respond when one is blatantly ignored for what may be
>sexist reasons?  Even if it may be unintentional?


I am a man involved in science, and I hope I am not out of place in
making a suggestion/observation that I have not seen posted on this
subject yet. I have observed a trend (I'm not saying that it's good
or bad or whatever) over the years that women tend to speak more
quickly (words/min) than men (especialy men in science who carefully
choose each word). It may be that men have a slower comprehension rate,
or think about each word longer (sometimes unnecessarily so), I don't
know. All I know is that it is true. If you do not believe me, do this
simple experiment; eavesdrop on conversations between women and women,
men and men, and men and women, and count the words spoken per minute.

My suggestion is this; speak much slower and more deliberately while
looking members of the audience in the eye to guage whether they are
following or not. You may have to speak at a rate that almost seems
retarded to you (as a woman), but I feel that men tend to "tune out"
when the velocity of ideas/words being thrown at them exceeds their
slow/deliberate comprehension rate. What you refer to above as
"unintentional sexism" might actually be a true biological or social
conditioning difference between men and women in their speech and
communication patterns. I hope this helps.

						= eg =

The Spirit of Nature, a powerful force,
	belongs and returns to its creative source.
- Excerpted from The Collective Works of Johnny Pokerface -

More information about the Womenbio mailing list