Why there will be no more gender essentialist comments allowed on this site

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I am adding a new rule to the commenting guidelines for all Hathor sites. It bans the use of any gender essentialist arguments in comments.

Gender essentialism is the assumption that women are naturally like this, while men are naturally like that, and nature made it so and anyone who deviates from that pattern is a freak. Most commonly it comes in the form of “women are naturally submissive and men are naturally dominant”.

This is an absolutely unprovable statement. It is an opinion, not a fact. Look at the amount of gender conditioning we receive from infancy: different colors for girls and boys (in some cultures), commercials proclaiming boys like toy guns and trucks while girls like dollies that pee. Throughout life, we are punished for deviating from our cultural gender norms, and yet very few people find it easy to avoid those deviations.

If it’s so natural, why all the conditioning?

You can, of course, hold the opinion that nature makes people a certain way and there’s just something wrong with women who don’t desperately want to submit to a man, or with men who cry or hug male friends, with women who don’t like dresses and makeup, with men who rather enjoy wearing eyeliner. You just can’t say any of it on this site.

Why? Because we don’t have time for you. We don’t have time to argue with every one of you who comes on here stating his opinions as fact. I realize gender essentialism is largely accepted as fact by most people in casual conversations. I do understand why you think you are entitled to say these things. I’m just telling you: not here. Comments stating gender essentialist views as fact will be deleted, disemvoweled, struck-through, or whatever strikes the admin’s fancy.

Thank you for understanding. Oh, and the same goes for any statements that certain races of people share certain traits, or orientations, etc. For pity’s sake, even common society no longer accepts sweeping statements about race the way it does about gender. I shouldn’t even have to mention it, but of course, it’s happened before.

Comments

  1. Purtek says

    Thankyouthankyouthankyou. :)

    I was *just* listening to a CBC radio show and thinking ‘why does even the most thought-provoking media have to include some casual gender essentialist reference?’ The phrasing on the broadcast, and it’s one I hear all the time was “men are like this, while women are like this. It’s just the way it is“.

    I don’t understand why that passes as an argument when, in general, we (as a culture) are so insistent on well-thought-out, strongly supported positions.

  2. Jennifer Kesler says

    What I don’t understand is why it’s largely agreed upon that having a certain skin color doesn’t indicate anything about you. It doesn’t tell where you grew up, or how you keep your home, or what sort of people you associate with – like people once imagined it did (and some still do).

    But even intellectuals think that being male or female says loads about you. I think there’s some basic animal instinct that assumes having a vagina simply cannot give a person the same outlook as having a penis.

    Honestly, though, why doesn’t anyone assume being short makes you see the world vastly differently from someone’s who’s tall? You could argue that short people inherently see themselves as prey and tall people see themselves as predators, and it would have a more seemingly logical foundation than gender essentialism. Of course, it’s all bullshit – just trying to illustrate a point.

  3. daisy says

    What I don’t understand is why it’s largely agreed upon that having a certain skin color doesn’t indicate anything about you. It doesn’t tell where you grew up, or how you keep your home, or what sort of people you associate with – like people once imagined it did (and some still do).

    This is a very privileged comment. The fact of the matter is, if you’re NOT WHITE, you get assumptions made about you all the time. Even in big-city blue-state America. You’re assumed to be “help” rather than a customer or guest. You’re assumed to be foreign. (“Where are you from?” “New Jersey.” “No, I mean, where are you FROM?”) You’re automatically assumed to like hip-hop, or salsa music, or be natually a better athlete/good student, depending on which variety of brown person you are.

    It’d be nice if racial stereotyping was dead, but it is alive and well, just like gender-based stereotypes.

  4. Jennifer Kesler says

    Thanks, Daisy. You’re right – sorry.

    I guess what I have observed is a drop in the trend of white people talking racial stereotype shit with each other… which I should not have taken as an indication they were applying those stereotypes any less in their daily dealings.

    Although, ironically, in the days since I wrote that comment, I’ve heard several people make (or describe someone making to them) overtly racist remarks or jokes.

    And then there’s that Watson fool stating that intelligence tests indicate Africans don’t have as high intelligence levels as “ours”, presumably Westerners, or white people, or… who the fuck knows. It’s an essentialist argument coming from an alleged geneticist, for heaven’s sake. I’m more convinced than ever that Rosalind Franklin and Francis Crick carried all the weight on the DNA discovery.

    Also, I never meant to imply that racial stereotyping was dead. I’m well aware it’s not. I was just arguing that it is less prevalent in ordinary conversation than gender stereotypes. I feel like if someone says “Most [race] are thieves” or something, most of the people around will chastise them. But if I assert that not all women yearn for a man to take care of them and boss them around, most of those very same people around will start psychoanalyzing me to find the horrible trauma that’s derailed me from my natural urge to be bossed around by men.

    Of course, the conversations I’ve had like this one have been in all-white groups, and that’s where the privilege comes in. ;)

  5. Anne Onne says

    I agree, BetaCandy. I wouldn’t say that racism is less prevalent, or less horrific (though I have white privilege, so I know I would be less sensitive to it, but that allowed for…), but it’s socially less acceptable in the media. By which I mean that if a racist comment or racially essentialist comment is made, a bigger deal is made about it than if a sexually essentialist comment.

    It’s anecdotal, I know, but the instances of racist language or sentiments in reality tv shows are much more publicised and complained about. I’m not quite sure why, but there is a small difference in the public acceptability of different types of disctrimination. Maybe your average person respects civil rights/anti-racism campaingers past and present more than feminists because of the old tropes (yes, I know the two are not discrete sets of people, but in the bublic eye, they are.)

    Of course, it’s unfortunate that there is still so much racism around, especially with people not wanting to question their privilege and admit their racism.

    And sex essentialism has always bugged me. It always dicsurages people from doing something they might otherwse have been good at, and then they say ‘I don’t/can’t because I’m X’. I try to correct people by reminding them they aren’t good at X because they chose not to learn the skill/aren’t physically up to it because of their personal body, not just sex/were coerced into not doing it by what other people would think. I guess people really don’t think abojut how unlike stereotypes we all are if we think about it…

    Great post. I came here from the Feminism 101 blog, and wondered if I could still comment…

  6. MaggieCat says

    And sex essentialism has always bugged me. It always dicsurages people from doing something they might otherwse have been good at, and then they say ‘I don’t/can’t because I’m X’. I try to correct people by reminding them they aren’t good at X because they chose not to learn the skill/aren’t physically up to it because of their personal body, not just sex/were coerced into not doing it by what other people would think. I guess people really don’t think abojut how unlike stereotypes we all are if we think about it…

    This is one of those things where I really have to applaud my father. (And the irony of doing so in a space where we frequently condemn the patriarchy amuses me greatly.) As an only child, I was roped into the apprentice mechanic/plumber/carpenter role as soon as I could identify tools, but as a rather prissy little girl (I can’t think of a better way to phrase that at the moment, but suffice to say the words “Stepford wife in the making” were uttered at several points, and it scared the crap out of my family), I wasn’t so much a fan of the getting dirty part. I distinctly remember once when I was about 4 and my dad was working on the car, and I tried to use the “I shouldn’t have to do this, I’m a girl” argument because- motor oil and yucky. I immediately got a talking to about how that sort of crap wasn’t going to fly around him.

    What I find so ironic about the situation, and why it’s stuck in my head all these years, is because even then if anyone had dared to tell me that I couldn’t do something because I was a girl or that I was supposed to act a certain way because I was a girl I would have dug in my heels and refused to back down, but somehow it was (however briefly) a reasonable argument in my head because it was being made by a girl. Which makes no sense once you actually stop and look at it for a second, but I wonder how many people ever do.

    I think that may have something to do with the problem, because with any stereotype there are going to be some people who fit certain aspects of it who may see arguments to the contrary– that certain things in their own behavior may not be innate but learned– as a personal attack. So they just uphold the status quo as some form of mental self-defense. Because if you’ve been conforming to someone else’s ideas that tell what you can and cannot do, just what and how much may you have given up in the blink of an eye?

  7. rufusruff says

    I can completely understand (and agree) that no-one wants to hear ‘women are all X” nonsense. However, is it ‘gender essentialist’ to comment on studies that tend to find preponderancies of one quality or another – for example, the visual-spatial, systematising ‘male brain’ argument, which I have personally found useful in understanding the thinking styles of the three males in my family – especially the autistic one!

    I’ve read quite a good argument which says one can take on board such studies so long as one remembers always that it’s an unwarranted step from ‘gender A statistically tends towards this’ to ‘being gender A *means* you do this’, further astray to start to claim ‘gender B can’t do this’ and worst of all ‘if you can’t/don’t do this, you have no business as a member of gender A’.

    To return to my original example, it means I certainly make no assumptions about my two best female friends, who are respectively a programmer and a scientist, and would take it extremely amiss if anyone else did…

    I’m also a little troubled by the apparent assumption in a post further up that not being good at something more or less means you just haven’t tried hard enough/had enough exposure. There are real differences in individual abilities and skills – otherwise we could all become sports stars given enough practice. E.g. I’m not a Maths wiz, and I don’t believe this is because I am female (though I do basically accept the above researched evidence about tendencies of ‘male brains’), but because it’s not a big skill with me and, more importantly, I’m just not interested enough.

  8. Jennifer Kesler says

    Rufusruff, good questions.

    You can argue that men tend to be this and women tend to be that, because I think we all agree that people often tend to conform to stereotypes. What we don’t know is whether this is the result of thousands of years of cultural programming or biology. So what we’re rejecting is the insistence that any perceived differences are due to genes, when that simply cannot be proven (as you can’t isolate a person from all cultural influence to see how they behave with nothing but genes to inform their thinking).

    Does that make sense?

    I’m not sure which post you’re referring to in your final paragraph, but I agree that different individuals have different fortes (most of which have nothing to do with gender). I don’t think that “not being good at something more or less means you just haven’t tried hard enough/had enough exposure”, so if I came across that way somewhere, it’s not what I intended. It’s true in some cases, of course – if a girl with natural math talent isn’t exposed to math because “girls aren’t good at math”, that would definitely hold her back. But there are certain things I will never be great at, no matter my level of exposure or effort, and that’s always going to be a fact of life.

  9. rufusruff says

    BetaCandy,

    yes, I do see what you mean. We definitely agree about the ‘individual skills’ issue, and I agree also about the importance of not stifling genuine talent on false gender-based presumptions.

    I still think it can be argued that, e.g. certain thinking styles are genetically hardwired, and some occur more often in men than in women. Although I take your point about it being very difficult to separate out putative genetic influences from social ones in the general population, I think the question of autism is quite relevant here. Autistic people are, by and large and in my experience, not ‘shaped’ by gender expectations because they aren’t nearly so (in some cases not at all) socialised in any way, due to their extreme difficulties absorbing that type of information. They tend to have an extreme version of a systematising, compartmentalised thinking style, and they are overwhelmingly male.

    Now diagnosis counts for a lot, granted. It’s thought that women on the spectrum are underdiagnosed. However I have seen no claims that the gender ratio should be anywhere near 50:50. I work with adults with learning disabilities and there are very definitely sex-linked genetically inherited conditions that produce given effects on mental capacity and skills (eg fragile X).That seems to me to beg a question about genetics.
    I have no doubt that actual genetically influenced gender characteristics are far, far fewer than is popularly supposed, and are about tendencies within large populations, not individuals. But I’m going to stick my neck out and say that I believe there are a few – and of course they are *also*influenced by the factors you cite. The question, afaiac then becomes: so what?

    Do we need to argue that all apparent gender differences must be socially constructed, in order to fight against prejudice and discrimination based on common perceptions of same? I fear that by doing so we just look as if we want to flat out deny that we are biological beings with evolutionary characteristics, and to avoid the problem of considering that if there are two genders there might be a ‘good’ evolutionary reason for that. The naturalistic fallacy is, after all, fairly easy to demolish by pointing to all the ‘natural’ impulses/qualities that we have that clearly for the benefit of any cohesive society and preserving the rights of others, must be educated or legislated against.

    I can see not wanting to hear the simplistic version of that fallacy here because it’s usually an excuse trotted out by people who don’t care to think too hard. But failing to engage ourselves with the more subtle questions raised by science is surely shooting ourselves in the foot?

  10. Jennifer Kesler says

    You may be familiar with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, since it’s sometimes misdiagnosed as high functioning autism, and vice versa. 65% of NPDs are male. The reason? At the heart of NPD is a need to be on the top rung of your society. Women can never truly be at the top rung, and NPDs perceive this early in life like everyone else, so females who would otherwise have been NPDs tend instead to develop Histrionic Personality Disorder, which exhibits a lot of the same behavior as the somatic narcissist (histrionics fit the stereotype of the Prima Donna), but does not require her to be respected by all – just adored by all, which a woman can achieve.

    So with this example of how a psychiatric disorder manifests with respect to cultural gender biases, I will acknowledge the possibility that everything you’re saying about autism is true and there are physical differences in male and female brains which lead to differentials in autism, but I maintain it’s also possible autism’s manifestation is following social rules we wouldn’t have thought the autistic child is aware of, but s/he may well be.

    That said, we’re not arguing that it’s impossible for there to be physical differences hard-coded into gender. We’re arguing that it’s impossible to prove such differences exist, by and large, and we’re not talking about conditions like autism which may have or definitely have physical components. We’re tired of people coming in here and saying, “You might as well shut up: women are naturally submissive, and you gals won’t be happy until you realize just how much you want to be taken over by a big strong man.” That’s not a legitimate argument, that’s an attempt to shut us up with bogus “facts”.

    Which is not at all what you’re doing. Also, you’re not insisting that you know the facts, and if we don’t agree with you, we’re in denial. That’s another routine we’ve had more than enough of in the past.

    I think I’ve deleted the best examples, but there was once a guy who came to the film site to patiently explain to all us confused gals how black people really ARE hardwired to be criminals, and women really ARE hardwired to be submissive and less promiscuous than men, except black women who are naturally promiscuous. It was jaw-droppingly ugly, racist, sexist crap, and he framed it all as The Facts According To Science and The Lord Our God, and anyone who disagreed was just stupid. That is what we mean by essentialism.

    I can see not wanting to hear the simplistic version of that fallacy here because it’s usually an excuse trotted out by people who don’t care to think too hard. But failing to engage ourselves with the more subtle questions raised by science is surely shooting ourselves in the foot?

    Nope, because this blog is not the whole world. There are plenty of more appropriate spaces for discussing the “more subtle questions raised by science”.

    That said, what you’re talking about – science – is not the basis of gender essentialism. Gender essentialism, when it’s couched in anything like scientific terms, comes from an over-interpretation of evolutionary biology findings, as in the guy I discussed above with the nasty racism and sexism which he supported with lots of superficially sensible-sounding examples. While I’m sure autism researchers, like everyone else, have their own mild to severe prejudices to overcome, I think they’re in more danger of extrapolating a false and restrictive definition of “normal” than extrapolating that Jane’s place really is in the kitchen. ;)

  11. rufusruff says

    Betacandy,

    for sure, you can’t separate out diagnoses/manifestations of mental illness or PD from the society in which they occur – particularly PD which some argue is quite as much, or more, about early experiences as inbuilt brain chemistry. I do see what you’re getting at. From what little I know of PD, I’d say the category of “Asocial Personality Disorder” which we have here in the UK (don’t know if you have the same where you are) fits high-functioning ASD to a tee, rather than NPD, but YMMV.

    Some autism researchers can fall into the ‘let’s pathologise people for being unusual’ camp, but in fact the ‘autism is an extreme version of the male brain’ researchers are much more prone to argue that it has survived in the gene pool because it is a version of an adaptive characteristic, and thus more ‘normal’ than not…but that again is a topic for another board.

    As for your trolls: I have a nice fist here, which is longing to meet their face. Grr.

    Incidentally, after a fairly fruitless attempt recently to persuade my 18 year old son of the reality of male privilege (as a teenager who had quite a hard time at school he thinks he’s the underdog, plus see above re: inflexible systematiser, though not autistic per se), I’ve sent him the link for this site – with strict instructions to read everything with due humility and not to post anything stupid :-)

  12. rufusruff says

    It sounds like maybe in his case, his male privileges aren’t proving much of an advantage, which can make it seem like it’s not really a privilege. I wrote about something similar once: my journey to realizing that even though I was a very poor white person whose whiteness was no big benefit, I still had some privileges over middle class people of color.

    Yes, I think that’s a good comparison. It’s also the whole “young and arrogant: ergo my parents are idiots”, together with “my experience/observation=objective experience/reality” empirical tradition which he’s wedded to as a Maths specialist. Reflective thinking is not part of that scenario, so the temptation is to disregard the testimony of others in favour of what you ‘see’, forgetting that what you see depends on your perspective.

    Mind you, I am doing a social work qualification at the moment and ‘postmodernism’ and ‘social construction’ are definitely trigger words for me and the XYs to have a ‘free and frank exchange of views’ as the phrase has it :-)

    Had a smilar debate with Him Indoors today about a comment in an article about ‘what it was like 30 years ago for women/ minorities’, to the effect that “your office’s equal pay, advancement by merit policy at that time =/= the universal employment situation for them at that time (not to mention that policy=/=practice)”. I think he got it in the end.

  13. Jennifer Kesler says

    I think your Asocial Personality Disorder is probably our “Anti-Social Personality Disorder”. It probably does get confused with high-functioning autism, too. I just used NPD because it provides such a great example of a disorder manifesting according to social biases.

    Hope your son gets something out of the site! It sounds like maybe in his case, his male privileges aren’t proving much of an advantage, which can make it seem like it’s not really a privilege. I wrote about something similar once: my journey to realizing that even though I was a very poor white person whose whiteness was no big benefit, I still had some privileges over middle class people of color.

  14. Anemone says

    Jennifer, I can see why you want to ban gender essentialism here. I’ve read the research, and I almost never see anyone get the arguments anywhere close to scientific accuracy. And as you say, this is not the place for that.

    Can you discourage arguments about autism too, by any chance? The comments on it here made me cringe, and I know there are better places on the net for that, too.

  15. says

    Outside of this thread, I can’t recall autism being mentioned elsewhere on the site. Please feel free to counter anything that’s been said that you believe to be false or unfair. As far as I knew at the time of this thread, nothing that was said about autism in this thread was false or unfair, but then I have come across a lot of conflicting theories about it. Or maybe that was your point…? That if researchers and sufferers haven’t yet reached a consensus, maybe it’s not good for an example?

  16. Anemone says

    I haven’t seen it elsewhere on this site either, for which I am grateful. Portrayals of autism are a touchy subject right now, especially with the recent Autism Speaks video “I Am Autism”. (Autism Speaks has a bad rep for not including autistic voices, for fearmongering to raise money for eugenics, and for siccing their lawyers on autistics who disagree.) We don’t all agree with each other, either. Basically, no one really knows what autism is. Though it does seem to involve sensory/information integration issues and non-language communication issues. Someone recently blogged about discovering the joys of closed captioning, and wished we could get subtitles in live conversations, too. Functionally, autism is somewhat like blindness or deafness.

    I wasn’t going to go into it, but since you said feel free . . .

    The whole “male brain” theory (Simon Baron Cohen at Cambridge) is frequently regarded as being rather silly, especially by autistic women. (SBC underdiagnoses women compared to other researchers.)

    rufusruff said that we are
    “not ’shaped’ by gender expectations because they aren’t nearly so (in some cases not at all) socialised in any way, due to their extreme difficulties absorbing that type of information. They tend to have an extreme version of a systematising, compartmentalised thinking style, and they are overwhelmingly male”

    We *are* subject to gender expectations same as everyone else, and we do pick up on them. However we are biologically different in the brain: more likely to be left handed; more likely to be GLBT. We *are* more likely to be androgynous, but it seems more innate than not, given that almost no one wants us to be. There are some lovely threads on this in the women’s section of Wrong Planet. (Autistic women appear to be blunter than average, too, for some reason. Though I’ve noticed this is also true of athletic women.)

    And there’s the silly extreme male brain theory again. Sigh.

    Oh, and please don’t call us “sufferers”. The social model of disability places the source of suffering (when there is any) on how society interacts with disabled people, rather than in the disability itself. It would be like saying women “suffer from femininity” in a male-dominated world.

    Anyway, it’s a complex, touchy subject.

  17. says

    Thanks for the information, and sorry for using “sufferers” – won’t happen again.

    That’s very interesting what you said about gender expectations. That’s what I was countering with my remarks about NPD, a disorder that’s markedly more prevalent with men. Could it be a chromosomal issue we haven’t yet identified? Sure. Could it be purely social, because it’s all about achieving a social status that’s only really available to men? Absolutely.

    And it’s the same with autism – we just can’t know how much genes contribute (if at all) to the fact that more males are diagnosed with autism than females.

    In this thread, I allowed people to present argument FOR gender essentialism one last time, so I could clarify why it simply doesn’t work. Even if we knew, for example, there was a genetic component to a disorder that affects one gender more often than another, it would not rule out there being a social one as well. Take migraines, which affect women far more often than men. You’d intuitively think it’s genetic, and research does indicate it has something (that no one quite understands) to do with estrogen levels. But women are typically subject to different stresses than men – for example, the stress of needing to look like a model in addition to being brilliant, top of our profession, or otherwise fabulous. Who’s to say those stresses don’t contribute to the gender gap in migraines?

    And getting back to your original question, I will definitely take note of any future comments on autism and caution people to be very conservative in their statements about the aspects of it no one really understands yet.

  18. Sally says

    Over on a page about Women and Maths ability, I referred to what you term ‘gender essentialism’ as ‘biologism.’

    Biologism is simply bad science, or rather a prime example of science in the service of — socially conservative — ideology. It can range from the ‘common-sensical’ (e.g., “Men have greater upper-body strength; therefore they are better at sports”) through the neuro-babblish (e.g., Louise Brizendine’s formulation that men are ‘sex-obsessed’ because the area of the ‘male brain’ devoted to sex is larger than the corresponding area of the ‘female brain’), the ‘psychological’ (e.g., Jennifer’s juxtaposition of NPD and HPD) and quasi-religious (the attempt to use ‘intelligent design’ to prove that men should submit to women) to the out-and-out horror of Wrangham and Peterson’s thesis in their book “Demonic Males,” that violence — especially the sexual violence that men offer women — is the inevitable and eternally unalterable result of our ancestry as chimpanzees, and the only way for women to escape this is to learn to use a gun (a good idea — except, of course, that men can acquire guns too, and so we are trapped in a never-ending cycle).

    Biologism is also damned dangerous. As I often point out to my fellow gays, the fact that “surveys show (!) that people are more sympathetic to lesbians and gays when they believe that homosexuals are born that way (i.e., it is a genetically determined condition or caused by hormone imbalance), rather than a ‘lifestyle choice’,” may help the young lesbian in fending off the attempts of Crazy Aunt Maud who wants to ‘counsel’ — read ‘brainwash’ — her into ‘normalcy,’ but it can be a dead-end trap if one is not careful.

    Some of these arguments are useful in a left-leaning and liberal society, in that those who are different can argue that they cannot help being what they are, but that they are still human beings and therefore are entitled to participate. In the chilly right-wing climate prevalent in the West at present, such thinking can lead to terrifying consequences, along the lines of “if the different can’t be cured, either chemically or psychologically, they may as well be disposed of, for the good of Society/The Race/Christendom/Whatever.”

  19. says

    rufusruff,

    There is actually no legitimate evidence that men and women have different cognitive skills. The so-called science that you’re referring to is pop-psychology, all of which is easily debunked in the book, “Delusions of Gender,” a book filled with mountains of peer-reviewed, scientific research. It’s written by cognitive neuroscientist Cordelia Fine.

    More important is something called “stereotype threat.” When people are made aware of gender differences, especially stereotypes, they begin to act in the way that they are expected to. In other words, women made painfully aware of women’s supposed poor math skills perform poorly on math tests, whereas women told that men and women are equal perform the same as men. Stereotype threat is extremely subtle, yet its effects are extremely dangerous. It has set women back for hundreds of years.

  20. twicker says

    Sitakali,

    More important is something called “stereotype threat.” When people are made aware of gender differences, especially stereotypes, they begin to act in the way that they are expected to. In other words, women made painfully aware of women’s supposed poor math skills perform poorly on math tests, whereas women told that men and women are equal perform the same as men.

    Oh – it’s worse than that; much worse. Actually, women don’t need to be made aware of women’s theoretically-worse performance in math – even highly-qualified women generally perform worse than men just because it’s a math test. The effect appears automatically, thanks to what society has already taught women. You can make it go away by saying that men and women perform equally, and you can make it go away if you remind/inform women test-takers that the stereotype threat effect exists. But making it “painfully aware?” No need – women, in general, already are.

    Sources:
    Spencer, Steele, & Quinn (1999) – discusses basic stereotype threat, includes the studies that show that you don’t need to prime for (make women painfully aware of) the effect, and that letting women know that there’s no actual proof of any difference removes the effect:
    http://www.leedsmet.ac.uk/carnegie/learning_resources/LAW_PGCHE/SteeleandQuinnStereotypeThreat.pdf

    Johns, Schmader, & Martens (2005) – wherein knowing that the threat exists removes the power of the threat:
    http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/40064197 (sorry … behind a paywall … not sure if there’s a free copy available somewhere)

    Schmader (2002) – gender identity produces the effect:
    http://schmader.psych.ubc.ca/publications/Gender%20Identification.pdf

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  1. [...] I recently added a new rule to the commenting guidelines: No gender essentialist comments. This means stating as fact that “women are naturally more submissive than men” or similar sweeping statements. These are not facts, and even as opinions, they are not appropriate for this site. For more info, read this. [...]

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