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Taking Sex Differences Seriously Paperback – May 1, 2005
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"Rhoads provides a responsible, clear, exhaustive, and convincing description of human sex differences...." -- Lionel Tiger, Rutgers University
"Scintillating and utterly persuasive Rhoads marshals massive amounts of evidence showing why they are wrong." -- Christina Hoff Sommers, American Enterprise Institute
"This book demonstrates in a host of ways how awareness of these differences will have important implications for social policy." -- Francis Fukuyama, author of The End of History and the Last Man and Our Posthuman Future
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In this view, gender is a social construction. Moreover, one can change one's gender like one changes one's clothes. Male today, female tomorrow, bisexual one day, homosexual the next. This is the brave new world of the gender benders.
The thesis Rhoads offers is simple: men and women are different, and these differences are basic, profound and rooted in our very nature. With a wealth of documentation and research, Rhoads sets the record straight, informing us of the clear scientific and biological case for male-female differences.
Hormones and other chemical/biological determinants cannot be dismissed when assessing gender. Their very presence means that nature has hotwired the human species into two clearly different sexes, and these differences cannot be wished away by social engineers.
And these changes can be found from our earliest moments, refuting the notion that social or environmental factors are the sole explanations for such differences. For example, day-old infants will cry when they hear a recording of another infant crying, but girls will cry longer than boys.
Women tend to be more communitarian, more nurturing and less aggressive than men. Researchers have found that there are universal constants running throughout every known human society, including division of labour by sex, women being the primary child carers, and the dominance of men in the public sphere.Read more ›
I should warn that Taking Sex Differences Seriously is not a chatty, self-help book. It is a highly erudite work in which the author examines study after study and author after author, yet, at the same time, it is very accessible (just as was the case with Why Men Don't Iron). It was written with the average person in mind even though it voluminously surveys contemporary scholarship. There is less focus here on statistics and experimental procedure than there is in works like The New Science of Intimate Relationships, The Mating Mind, or The Red Queen.
The study of sex difference can be quite precarious for the academic, and it is with some relief that I noted that Rhoads already has put in thirty years of service at the University of Virginia. For those without tenure, such a book could spell unemployment. The author cites the opinions of heavyweights like Gloria Steinem and Gloria Allred on the topic of sex research. They believe that making inquiries into the discrepancies between men and women is downright dangerous to all women and anti-American in spirit [!]. Yet, one could make a strong case that unearthing what others purposefully ignore is intrinsic to what it means to be an American.Read more ›
I have another good anecdote that relates directly to observations that women find men who act in "manly" ways sexy (described on pp. 67-68). A couple of years ago, my then 17 year-old daughter and her friends watched the movie "Black Hawk Down" on video. After the movie was over, my daughter's best friend remarked, "Is it just me, or were all of those guys "hot?" As Shavaun's comment attests: women find warriors "hot." Indeed, one of the few times I have been really intimidated by other men in a purely social setting was when my family and I visited by sister-in-law and her husband, who at the time was a Lt. Commander in the USN and was attending the Naval War College in Newport, RI. One night we went to the Officers' Club for dinner and were surrounded by a large group of men who had experienced combat and were fresh from victory in the first Gulf War. Surrounded by these warriors, I suddenly felt very inadequate, and to this day, like many men who have not faced combat, wonder how I would respond. Men probably also find warriors "hot," but in a very different way than do women.
I think that this book should be read, debated, and utilized by policy makers.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had to buy this for a college course and I ended up loving it. Its a good read, even if you don't need it to pass a class. Read morePublished on January 11, 2014 by ohhaithur
When I was in grad school in the 1970s, students never came out and said, I disagree. Your problem is that you solved the wrong problem with the wrong method and reached wrong... Read morePublished on October 28, 2013 by W. VASSAR
This book is very misleading and presents an avalanche of science and pseudoscience twisted to meet his fantasies. Read morePublished on February 13, 2013 by Ari
University of Virginia public policy professor Steven E. Rhoads' latest book purports to be a meticulously researched and elegantly written, provocative and groundbreaking... Read morePublished on November 29, 2012 by J. Steven Svoboda
Truth about boys & mens' biological differences, their unique & different needs for help (than females) have long been the most threatened towers of institutionalized denials in... Read morePublished on July 2, 2011 by Jessie McCallister
I started to read this book because I try to keep an open mind on these things but as soon as I read this man's opinion on what women's "nature" is, what they want, and what they... Read morePublished on September 26, 2010 by Learning New Ways
I read this book and my favorite part is where he speaks about the casual sex culture and how "sexual liberation" resulted in MORE sexual exploitation of women not less. Read morePublished on January 31, 2010 by Amy
For a while I have felt depress and did not really know why. Now I know why! This book will gives you many pieces of the puzzle. Read morePublished on January 25, 2010 by Luis
Taking Sex Differences Seriously is a pleasure to read. The book is well written, very well researched, and makes a strong contribution to disseminating knowledge of our... Read morePublished on September 4, 2008 by David C. Geary