The meta-analysis of 46 other studies showed that were no cognitive, personality, emotional, or leadership differences between boys/girls or men/women. Socialization starts the instant kids are born, even ones whose parents try hard to not do that in a gender-specific way, are still so exposed to it in the rest of the world.

The restrictions are worse because it’s push back against progress. The more that the rules of patriarchy (which is about all kinds of stratification, and not just that between men and women) get dismantled, the more some people try to put them back because they don’t know how to make sense of the world otherwise. Plus, in a dominance hierarchy, which is what the social system of patriarchy is, if you don’t win you lose.

White men have been closer to the top of the pyramid, and they don’t want to feel they are losing that place. Like that guy from Tennessee the other day who was ranting in a city council meeting about how white men were losing their rights because other people were getting some. Greater equality doesn’t take anyone’s rights away but it might feel that way in a dominance hierarchy. If a gay man can now run for president, that means that straight white men aren’t the top of the pyramid anymore.

Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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