I really do miss comments. Ceejay wanted to add this to Surprise! and I am happy to post comments when I get them via email:
Just found your blog and love it.
Yes, yes, yes about the testing. I was recently telling someone online that when IQ tests were first introduced, women scored higher than men, so they had to change the questions to “prove” that men are smarter. The person asked for the source, so I have it handy and thought I would pass it along.
From “The Gendered Society” by Michael S. Kimmel.
from page 31:
<Test scores were no better as indicators. At the turn of the century, women were found to be scoring higher on comprehensive examinations at New York University. Since scientists “knew” that women were not as smart as men, some other explanation had to be sought. “After all, men are more intelligent than women, examination papers or no examination papers,” commented the dean of the college, R. Turner. “Women have better memories and study harder, that’s all. In tasks requiring patience and industry, women win out. But when a man is both patient and industrious, he beats a woman any day.” (It is interesting to see that women’s drive, ambition, and industriousness are used against them, rather than labelling the problem as men’s impulsiveness, impatience, and laziness. In the 1920s, when IQ tests were first invented, women scored higher on those tests as well. So the experimenters changed the questions.>
His footnote for this then has the following:
<Turner is cited in “South Side Observer, 29 April 1896; C.A. Dwyer, “The Role of Tests and Their Construction in Producing Apparently Sex-Related Differences,” in “Sex-Related Differences in Cognitive Functioning,” M. Wittig and A. Peterson, eds. (New York: Academic Press, 1979), p. 342.
If you want to see my blog, just to have some idea who is writing, here ’tis:
Good one, Ceejay. Thanks.