It is frequently claimed that men and women are basically the same, apart from their reproductive roles, any perceptible differences being due to social conditioning. According to this theory, boys are taught to suppress tears and to engage in rough, competitive activities, while girls are encouraged to play with dolls and to develop personal relationships and domestic skills. So-called ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ behavior patterns are seen as programmed into human beings from an early age.
Glenn Wilson examines this hypothesis in the light of scientific evidence from human biology, anthropological studies and the animal world. He argues persuasively that it is essential to recognize male and female psychological differences in addition to the obvious physical disparities and that an acknowledgement of their existence does not undermine their right to equality before the law; rather, it can help men and women fulfil themselves and promote understanding between the sexes.
The author is an eminent psychologist who has spent many years researching human personality and sexual behavior. His book contains much stimulating and provocative research and should be read by everyone with an interest in issues of gender and human relations.