Atlantic Books £8.99
The Sexual Paradox, By Susan Pinker
Sunday 18 January 2009
Susan Pinker's big idea is that there are inherent psychological differences between the sexes and that they, rather than a glass ceiling, account for the persistent gap between men and women's occupancy of top professional positions. In the past, inherent differences have been used to justify all sorts of unfair treatment, but that isn't Pinker's agenda. She demolishes the idea of "vanilla gender" (the notion that men and women are basically the same) with evidence from a battery of interviews and psychological tests. It's a shame that the clichés are all true, but they seem to be: men are more competitive and single-minded; women are more empathetic, have better language skills, prefer working with people to things, and value quality of life more than career success.
Pinker's research shows that around 20 per cent of women are prepared to follow the typically masculine career path of elbowing their way to the top. But it's never going to be 100 per cent and we'd be better off, she concludes, acknowledging the differences and working with them.
TV reviewBroadcasting House was preparing for a visit from Prince Charles spoiler alert
Glastonbury Michael Eavis reveals final headline act 'most likely' British pair
Film Ewan McGregor joins star-studded Beauty and the Beast cast as Lumiere
TVThe Island with Bear Grylls under fire after male contestants kill and eat rare crocodile
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 The Visit: Trailer for M Night Shyamalan's latest horror film is terrifying
- 5 9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
Fast & Furious 7 overtakes Frozen to become 5th highest grossing movie of all time
Poldark, series 1 finale, review: How a costume drama became a Sunday night swoon-fest
The Visit: Trailer for M Night Shyamalan's latest horror film is terrifying
Apprentice series 11: Claude Littner to replace Nick Hewer as Lord Sugar's aide
Game of Thrones season 5 episode 3, review: Sansa and manhood-lopping torturer Ramsay Bolton - really?
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'