Are men really brain damaged at birth?

Dani coma56 at popstar.com
Sat Jun 30 19:50:41 EST 2001

in article sSm%6.1518$Jp5.22953 at news1.oke.nextra.no,
    Brian wrote:

> "Dani" <danielle at zzz.arcticmail.com> skrev i melding
> news:B7627675.2207%danielle at zzz.arcticmail.com...
>> What does "guass-wise" mean?
> Gauss-wise, not guass.

Isn't that what I wrote?

> Anyway, what I meant was that intelligence is distributed NOT equally, but
> bunched around 100 points (middle reference) with 'tails' that tells there
> are
> fewer idiots or geniouses than average joe's and jane's.
> You should read "The Bell Curve" and it is not to much for you as the
> portion
> of interest is covered to page 552,  the rest is references and appendixes..

I'll check that book out next time I visit the library.

> I covered this in my later replies as I said that intelligence should not be
> read
> as a one-dimensional score, but as a two-dimensional score;verbal and
> spatial.
> The difference between these two 'skills' are somewhat related to each
> other, but for better measurement; the psychometricians should develope a
> better model than what we have now.

That's what I figured you meant. But why stop at two dimensions? I think
there's probably dozens of facets that should be accounted for if we want
tests that actually tell us anything about what a person is capable of.

> There was one neuroscientist here that told about the experiment they
> performed
> on rats and they measured the rats performance with enhanced hormone-levels.
> They used corticosterone.
> The test was never completed as the mortality-rate was high (and I'll
> adresse this
> later), and the work was done sloppy (his words, not mine).

I read that. Interestingly, I read somewhere (can't remember where) that
high levels of corticosteroids interfere with testosterone, lower T levels.
I'm not sure if such a thing is true, perhaps someone knowladgeable in that
area could comment.

> What I think; and most would agree with me here I think; is that the human
> growth is pretty much controlled by the genes (at least 80%), unless they're
> underfed or something unatural occured.

I agree with that.

> Of course it is the developement of the brain !!!
> What difference do YOU think there is between male and female brains ?

I don't know for certain. Nobody does. I think there are in fact differences
between male and female brains, perhaps only very minor differences, but I
also think many neuroscientists tend to exaggerate sex dimorphism and what
effects they have on gender differences. I made a webpage containing
everything that I've learned about brain sex dimorphism:

> One; there have been discovered structural differences between male and
> female neurons in certain segments of the brain.

Yes. The INAH-3 hypotalamic nuclei for instance.

> Two,the corpus callosum is better developed in females.

That's not known yet with certainty. As I stated in my first letter in this
thread, most studies performed in the last 15 years on sex dimorphism of the
corpus callosum have failed to find a difference. I guess it depends upon
which study you want to look at.

> Are you bullshitting me ????

Absolutely not.

> I've read about the XXY's and the YY's, but in no way is sex a social
> construct.

That's what I used to think until I learned about intersex people and the
process of the sexing of the physical body. Then my ignorance began to
dissolve :-)

> That is a PC-doctrine which is flawed.

I can understand why you might believe such a thing, given the drivel that
has come from certain feminist philosophers. But it is a fact that "sex" is
to a *certain degree* a social construct.

> IF a baby developes naturally for a periode; the brain developes with the
> body; and
> the hormones changes drastically; then the body (and brain) might develope
> male
> or female characteristics that would override the genetic programming.

I'm not entirely sure what point you're making in this passage. The
development of physical sex is quite complex, there are many oppurtunities
for "mistakes". Consider, for example, a baby "boy" (with XY chromosomes)
who has AIS (androgen insensitivity syndrome). "He" can be born with
genitalia that is feminized to such an extent that the doctor who delivers
"him" doesn't realize that the baby is anything other than a healthy girl.
Then, because of the AIS, this person grows up to become a female, a woman
in every respect (socially, gender-wise, physically, secondary sex
charactieristics, etc.) except that they're missing the female gonads
(hence, infertile). This has happened to many people in the real world. Some
of them didn't learn that they were intersexed until well into adulthood,
when they discovered it by accident because of a gene test or something.

Now is this AIS person a man or a woman?

> And since humans are animals as the rats and monkeys are, why should we be
> much
> more different than them ?

The process *probably* is very similar in fact. But it is not yet with
cetainty. The scientists and researchers still have some work to do.

> I support that theory, it seems much more coherent than the social
> construct-thing you
> came with earlier.

First, I am *NOT* a "social constructivist". I do *NOT* believe that gender
is formed solely by childhood environment. (I think it's a minor factor).

Second, you are confusing two things: sex and gender. Sex is the physical
body, genitalia. Gender is the subjective sense of being either male or
female (or perhaps somewhere in between the two, reality is rarely a binary
affair :-> ). It is possible in theory for sex and gender to develop
independently from each other. This is one of the putative etiologies of
transsexualism or transgenderism. If a baby boy's brain is not exposed to
the "proper" levels of androgens during the critical period of brain
masculinization, then he might end up female gendered, i.e., feel like a
woman trapped in a boy's body. A boy with a girl's brain/mind: A transsexual
or a transgender. But this is, as I said, theory.


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