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Boys know everything


Pfffft boys, amirite? They think they and all their brofriends are SO the smartest ever. Like these boys in biology class at the University of Washington, who were asked "Who is the smartest kid in class?" and the boys said it is some boy, because of course!

Male students consistently identified other male students as more knowledgeable, even over better-performing female students. And the bias was huge. Men gave their male peers a "boost" equivalent to three-quarters of a GPA point on a 4-point scale.

[contextly_sidebar id="ORycnmg00Xas3ZRUSmq7cOHiqORhZClH"]Everyone (who is a boy) knows boys are better at doing science, and girls should stick to make-up. Or, if the ladies are going to be all stubborn about it and insist on working in traditionally FOR MENFOLK fields like science and technology and engineering and mathematicianing, they should at least smile more and let the fellas in the lab sneak a peek at their underparts. But not too much, because then the boy scientists will fall in love with the girl scientists and break their girl hearts and make them cry girl tears, and that is VERY DISTRACTING for the boy scientists.

The nerds who made with this research also found that no, it's not just your dirty old grandpa's generation who thinks boys are the smartest in class. The post-modern, post-sexism, post-manners, post-employment kids these days have the same old-fashioned malarkey thoughts in their squishy young brains too:

"Because these are millennials showing this pattern, it means the age-old problem of gender bias may not go away simply because we have a new generation in charge," lead author Dan Grunspan said in a statement.

We know what you're thinking (if you're a boy). You're thinking OH YEAH? Well, girls are reverse-sexists, and they probably think they're the smartest even when they're not, so it all evens out. But you are wrong, young sir:

Women, on the other hand, didn't show much gender bias at all in whom they chose. They showed only a slight bias toward other female students, equivalent to a .04 GPA boost. So researchers estimated that men's gender bias was 19 times greater than women's.

[contextly_sidebar id="MXLghuZnBU2B5KiimuyRqVzAH8OjxIQw"]So why does any of this matter? It doesn't if you're a boy, because everyone already figures you're the smartest and the bestest and you belong in the science lab and the rocket ship and the executive washroom and the White House. Good for you, for being born with the right kind of penis! Please proceed to wherever you want in life.

But if you are a girl, and you dig science-y stuff the most, it can be discouraging to know that even if you are the smartest in class, your penis-swinging classmates will assume you can't be, because girl. And if you stick it out and become professional science-doers, you'll have to work twice as hard for not as much money, and if you are a women of color, you'll be mistaken for the janitor, because who ever heard of a black lady scientist anyway?

It's enough to make a nerd girl think "oh fuck it, what's the point?" and major in something else, like nail polish.

During such transition points, like the period leading into college or graduate school, people tend to be especially sensitive to social cues and feedback about whether they're cut out for a certain subject area. And the implicit feedback women in STEM get from their male peers doesn't seem to help.

And that, boys and girls, is how boys continue to assume Ken is better than Barbie at doing science, even though Barbie's grades are higher and her brain is bigger. That's what they learn in school and on the TV and from the movies and from the astonishing underrepresentation of women in government and business and positions of power in all the everywheres. Still. Even today.

Good thing we late-term abortioned the patriarchy so no one will do systemic sexisming ever again, huh, ladies?

[Vox]

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