"Mismeasure of Woman" by Carol Tavris

Essay by birdy02University, Master's April 2003

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Carol Tavris's "The Mismeasure of Woman" offers the reader insight into the inequality and problems women face in society. I approached this book with the assumption that it would glorify women and belittle men. I figured that the author would blame all the problems women face on men. In Actuality, the author looked to society for the genuine source of women's inequality and never placed the blame on any one group of people. The book explains that although there are differences in the behavior of men and women in certain situations both types of behavior are equal and for the most part influenced by society. It is for that reason I recommend "The Mismeasure of Woman" for both male and female readers. It offers a wealth of information and insight that would benefit society as a whole, as well as, the relationships between men and women.

To help explain my recommendation and reasoning, it is necessary to take a short look at what the book is saying. The book starts off by talking about the various reasons society views women to be inferior to men. It seems to be built into our modern society to view men as the norm. Tavris explains early in the book about the experiments that were set up to study the male and female brain. The scientist's were trying to prove that the male brain is superior to the female brain. The author informs us that the results of the experiments were largely based on animals and not humans. The results of the human tests were inconsequential and did not support the scientist's hypothesis and therefore were often never published. It was found in the study of the brain and almost all other areas where men and women are thought...