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Women's Logic And Women's Intuition: A Scientific View - Research, Self-development
Women's Logic And Women's Intuition: A Scientific View - Research, Self-development

Video: Women's Logic And Women's Intuition: A Scientific View - Research, Self-development

Video: Women's Logic And Women's Intuition: A Scientific View - Research, Self-development
Video: The power of intuition | Katrine Kjaer | TEDxHSG 2023, June

The stereotypes of "feminine logic" and "feminine intuition" are surprisingly persistent. Do women really have a particular style of thinking - or is it just a myth? We understand from the standpoint of cognitive and gender psychology what female logic and intuition are

Popular rumor ascribes to women several specific features related to decision-making at once. It is customary to think that women often make decisions unconsciously, irrationally - but thanks to a special property, “female intuition,” these decisions often turn out to be correct 1. It is assumed that this ability is innate, inherent in the fact of gender. Commoners, bloggers and even some psychologists explain this by a variety of reasons: special energy, hormonal regulation, or specific features of the brain structure 2.

There are very similar ideas about a phenomenon called "female logic" 3. Unlike the “masculine” or common human logic, it is credited with unpredictability, randomness, the presence of unclear conclusions, etc. The main factor that distinguishes the stereotypically “feminine” style of thinking is high impulsivity and excessive exposure to emotions.

What does the research say?

Despite the conventional wisdom strongly dissimilar ways of thinking men and women, scientific evidence suggests that critically significant differences between them 4. Moreover, special studies show that although girls are somewhat more likely than boys to prefer intuitive decisions, this difference is statistically insignificant 5.

Psychologists have found that a phenomenon called "intuition" is a special way of processing information that includes both cognitive and emotional mechanisms 6. Its main features are fast, sometimes instant decision making and a hidden, unconscious nature.

In other words, our brain, guided by previous experience and existing associative connections, "builds" a chain of facts, "transferring" only its final link to consciousness - for the person himself, it ultimately looks like "the decision came by itself" or "I don't know why, but it doesn't seem right to me. " However, a number of researchers also believe that what is usually meant by the word "intuition" is nothing more than an unintentional "adjustment" of one's actions and deeds to a result supposedly predicted in advance - a kind of self-fulfilling prophecy 7.

There is no smoke without fire

Despite the fact that stereotypes about the ways of thinking of people of different sexes are not supported by real data, they did not arise from scratch. The fact is that the notorious "female logic" and "female intuition" are concepts that characterize not how women think, but how others perceive them.

Social attitudes that prescribe to men and women fundamentally different "correct" styles of behavior are manifested in two interrelated phenomena: gender socialization and gender stereotypes

Gender socialization involves the upbringing of boys and girls in accordance with socially approved behavior models. Men are traditionally expected to have self-confident and aggressive leadership behavior - in accordance with these attitudes, parents and teachers encourage boys to play "war" and various competitions, hobbies for technology and construction. In contrast, female gender socialization implies gentleness, passivity, a willingness to care for others, and empathy. All this is brought up through traditional "girlish" games and practices: dolls and "daughters-mothers", attraction to caring for children and animals, a ban on aggression even with regard to toys: "Bear is in pain!"

Gender stereotypes are manifested in different forms - including the fact that the same expressions of emotion are labeled, depending on gender, in completely different ways. A man who defends his point of view will be called self-confident and decisive, and a woman who speaks with the same assertiveness is called a brazen upstart. A woman who is attentive to other people's needs will be designated as caring and sensitive, and a helpful man will be casually referred to as a sycophant or henpecked.

Psychologists have proven that differences in the attitude of adults towards children, firstly, are manifested in fact from birth, and secondly, they exist even in cases where, on a conscious level, people believe that they treat boys and girls the same. For example, in an experiment with watching a video, where a baby in neutral-colored clothes screams after seeing a "devil from a box", adults who were told that the video was a boy described his reaction as "angry", "anger." Those who were told that the child was a girl considered her cry as an expression of "fear" or "confusion" 8.

Solving the mystery

Is it surprising that, growing up, people of different sexes resort to different strategies - no, not thinking, but explanations of how certain thoughts "come to them"? This is the secret of the so-called "female" and "male" ways of thinking.


Men brought up in the paradigm of obligatory rationality as their default characteristic will adjust their argumentation so that it is “logical” or even “scientific”. So, in a sensational case on social networks, one "Sunday dad", walking with two daughters around the city, took them to a cafe, but ordered food only for himself 9. He not only ate it in front of the hungry girls, but also summed up a coherent rationale for his act: since the father must pay alimony to the mother of the children, then they will have to dine at home - so, they say, the girls will develop financial self-awareness from a young age.

Как видно, приводимая аргументация совершенно не обязательно будет соответствовать формальной логике – вполне возможно, что в ней будут присутствовать очевидные нестыковки, софизмы или ложные аксиомы – однако выглядеть она будет продуктом чистого разума. Это неудивительно: признание в том, что решение было принято под влиянием сиюминутного настроения или, например, такого чувства как скупость, категорически не соответствует стереотипному представлению о маскулинности – а значит, неприемлемо для «настоящего мужчины» в глазах традиционного общества.


Женщины же, напротив, нередко вырастают с убеждением, что их стихия – это область взаимоотношений и чувств. Соответственно, ими чаще принимается во внимание как раз эмоциональная составляющая процесса принятия решения. Даже весьма успешные предпринимательницы10 или ученые11 в интервью утверждают, что самые удачные их идеи пришли под влиянием не рационального выбора, но таинственного «шестого чувства», «веления сердца» – того, что и называется «интуицией». То же касается и «женской логики» – отказ или неумение рационализировать принятые имплицитно решения трактуется обществом (в том числе и самими женщинами) как отсутствие логики вообще, своего рода эксцентричность и взбалмошность, поддерживаемая традиционными представлениями о «правильной» феминности.


Таким образом, и «женская логика», и «женская интуиция» – конструкты, порожденные жестким давлением гендерных стереотипов на самосознание и взаимовосприятие людей

Хорошая новость состоит в том, что со временем это давление понемногу ослабевает: современные молодые люди гораздо свободнее относятся к необходимости следовать традиционным «мужским» и «женским» моделям поведения, обращая большее внимание на индивидуальность человека, а не на его соответствие феминному или маскулинному образу. Будем надеяться, что и мифы о якобы принципиальном отличии мышления людей разного пола, как и основанные на них сексистские шутки и оскорбления, канут в Лету – уже совсем скоро.


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