Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964517 | Print ISBN: 9781412909167 | Online ISBN: 9781412964517| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Gender and the Brain
Claire F. Sullivan
For hundreds of years, scientists have been delving into research concerning the differences between male and female brains. This research has at differences in brain size, structure, and functions. More recently, studies have been conducted on the influence of hormones on sex differences. This controversial research has led to some heated debates about the biological influence on gendered behaviors. This entry traces some of the findings and debates. One of the first topics to be considered was the comparative size of male and female brains. Male brains were noted to be larger than female brains were. The average brain of boys at birth was found to be 12 percent to 20 percent larger than that of girls. As adults, men were found to have brains that weighed 11 percent to 12 percent more than the average weight for women. This early research was used to label women as intellectually inferior. ...