Sex and the brain

“Are men more likely than women to be born with the potential for abstract brilliance in science, mathematics, the arts or music? Los Angeles correspondent Robert Lusetich reports on new research claims from the author of The Bell Curve.”

From The Australian:

The idea is as simple as its implications are seismic: women, as a group, lack the evolutionary genetic intelligence to master the highest strata of mathematics and the hard sciences. This is the central tenet of a contentious theory forwarded by famed US social scientist Charles Murray, who a decade ago made similarly explosive claims about the inferior genetic intelligence of blacks in his best-selling book The Bell Curve.

“It’s quite satisfying to see that I didn’t get nearly the hostile reaction I was expecting this time,” Murray says from his home near Washington. “After The Bell Curve, I was the Antichrist, so perhaps we have moved on and we can start looking at this data in an un-hysterical way.”

Perhaps. Another explanation may be that Murray has used up his 15 minutes of fame. Lisa Randall, an eminent Harvard theoretical physicist and cosmologist, had agreed to dissect Murray’s work, which appeared in the September issue of Commentary magazine in the US, for Inquirer but on reflection declined to respond. “The reason is that this just isn’t news and it’s not worthy of being covered,” she says. “If it really gets to the point where people accept it, I can explain the many logical fallacies in his piece.”

Murray counters with the shrug of a man who has heard it all before; he is fully prepared to take it on the chin from the “women’s studies crowd”.

“Universities are supposed to be places where we talk about these things, not run from them,” he says. “These are, in the end, questions of data, not my opinion.”

More here.