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Thursday, July 08, 2004

Sexists are falling down on the job

From Feministing, we have yet another wonderful stab at scientifically proving that men and women are not only different, but women are just naturally inclined towards the boring, domestic chores.

Those variations may have been especially important, Verrelli and Tishkoff speculate, in a time when humans were hunter-gatherers. Enhanced color perception would have allowed women, who were traditionally gatherers, to better discriminate among colored fruits, insects and background foliage.

Stupid? Check. Sexist? Check. But it's so unimaginative! If women do in fact see color better than men, think of all the sexist conclusions that can be drawn from that. Some ideas:

*Women should cook, as ingredients often come in different colors and they are better able to see this.
*Women should clean, since they can obviously see the dirt against other colors better.
*Women wear make-up not because they're the sex that's on display. How unscientific! Obviously, women wear make-up because of the pretty, pretty colors.
*And that's why women natter away talking about house design and other things, too.
*Women should do the laundry, since they can sort colors better.
*Women shouldn't expect poor, poor men to dress themselves properly anymore now that they know that it's because men can't see color. Clearly, dressing men is a responsibility women need to take on.
*Same with shopping. Women are obviously better at picking out products because of their color-betterness.

That's just a preliminary list of how the simple happenstance that women have better color vision than men could be spun. I'm sure really hard-working sexists could use this to "prove" that women really are dumber or less logical or less moral or something.

65 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, that proves that the Guerilla Girls' thesis is correct. Since we're inherently so good at picking out colors, women should be the most celebrated artists in the world, should we not?

Oh, that's right. We're busy scrubbing those countertops. Who has the time?

Lauren
feministe.us/blog/

7/08/2004

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't read the article yet, but I would be interested in their statistics. Sure, the red opsin is less essential to life than, for instance, RNA polymerase II (basic machinery for generating instructions to make proteins), so it stands to reason that more variability is tolerated in red opsin than RNA pol II.

Frankly I don't see the positive or negative selection value here of opsin mutations (at least until the advent of traffic lights ;) ). guess I will have to wait until AmJHuGenet. drops in my mailbox or hike over to the website and download the article.

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You had me at hello, Nancy. ;)
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