Thursday, August 18, 2011

Women's Brains

1. What is the general point that Gould is presenting?
Gould is presenting that the evidence provided is false and an unnecessary topic.
2. What is the general evidence on which that conclusion is based?
When you come to the conclusion of the article and his opinion he found it as just to be an aggravating topic to all researchers fighting against male superiority.
3. What is the gender of all the researchers producing those data and conclusions?
The gender of all the researchers seemed to be male.
4. What weaknesses or problems with those data and their interpretation does Gould point out?
Broca thought that the brain weight could be attributed to the person’s height but, supposedly he made no attempt to measure and left it alone stating that it may not be the whole cause of the difference but definitely an impact on it.
5. a) Name the one woman anthropologist mentioned who studied the subject of this essay. b) What did she find after proper correction of Broca's data? c) What were her conclusions from that finding?
a)Maria Montessori
b)She measured the circumference of children’s heads and inferred that the best prospects  had the bigger brains.
c)She found out she really had no use for the conclusions Broca’s had about women.
6. What conclusion does Gould reach about the central issue?
Gould stated, “I would rather label the whole enterprise of setting a biological value upon groups for what it is: irrelevant and highly injurious,” meaning he thought the issue aroused anger and a sort of miniature war between sexes and thought it was completely unnecessary.
7. Make a general statement about the role of bias and assumptions in the collecting, processing, and interpretation of data in scientific studies.
I think bias definitely played a role in this article.  The scientists were all men performing and documenting the “findings” and referred rather harsh things.  At times they were referred to as savages and as rare as a two-headed gorilla to find a women that is smarter than an average man.
8. What other kinds of bias can you think of that might influence observations and interpretations in science?
I believe there were two types of bias in this article, Study Quality Bias - Studies of lower or higher quality are associated with positive or favorable results and
Outcome Reporting Bias - A study in which multiple outcomes were measured reports only those that are significant, than those that were insignificant or unfavorable.
9. Describe your initial feelings (about the subject, the author, etc.) after reading the first 4 pages.
I believe basing it off the height and weight of the person shouldn’t matter on the topic of being smarter.  They claim that the difference of 181grams is enough to make a difference of how a person, more specifically, a female interprets and acts.  I believe that it is not the weight of the brain thats makes a person smarter but more of what info they have stored or obtained over the years of growing up.  They wouldn’t let a women get the same education that a normal man would, so I believe this is bias towards the males.  They wouldn’t test anything that would hurt their case.
10. Describe your feeling after finishing the entire article.
I agree with what Gould said in his conclusion.  I think that since they related women to savages, closer to children than men(being developed), and rare as a monstrosity to find a well-educated women, that all this caused was misunderstandings and an unnecessary topic of debate.

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