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Thread: Why do women like women more than men like men?

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    Why do women like women more than men like men?

    I posted this somewhere else earlier tonight, so I thought I'd share it here as well.

    "Gender differences in automatic in-group bias: Why do women like women more than men like men?"

    http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~rudman/LARSAG2004.pdf
    "I do not know what horrified me most at that time: the economic misery of my companions, their moral and ethical coarseness, or the low level of their intellectual development." Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

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    Re: Why do women like women more than men like men?

    Your question assumes something that is only ostensibly true, but is really false. It is ostensibly true only because men like women much more than they like men (= men don't like men very much), and women don't really give a damn about anybody (= women like women as much as men).

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    Re: Why do women like women more than men like men?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hippy
    Your question assumes something that is only ostensibly true, but is really false. It is ostensibly true only because men like women much more than they like men (= men don't like men very much), and women don't really give a damn about anybody (= women like women as much as men).
    Then you didn't read the study, because women do not like women as much as they like men. This study is about in-group bias (as even pointed out in the title), which means that they prefer women OVER men. According to their findings, this trend only reverses itself in the case of women who like sex.

    You are only correct that men do not like men very much. Does it bother you males that the women studied tend to show a stronger in-group bias? Oh, what a fragile thing the male ego can be.

    Some quotes from the article discussion section for those who do not want to read the entire article:

    As expected, compared with women, men were more automatically linked to threatening attributes (e.g., violence and aggression; see also Rudman, Greenwald, & McGhee, 2001, Experiment 2). More important, male threat associations predicted automatic pro-female bias for both men and women. Thus, men's greater proclivity for violence and aggression may bolster automatic preference for women, the less threatening sex.

    Consistent with this hypothesis, Experiment 2 showed that people who implicitly preferred their mothers also favored women in general. Of course, the causal direction of this relationship is unknown, but we suspect that because of early (even preverbal) attachment to maternal caregivers, people's mental machinery may be geared to automatically favor the feminine sex. In support of this interpretation, people who reported being raised primarily by their mothers also showed stronger pro-female bias, and the sequence of events is clear in this case. Thus, Experiment 2's results suggest that similarities in how children are raised (primarily by their mothers) can lead to automatic maternal preference, and this preference extends to liking women in general.


    For both men and women, the more sexual encounters they had, the more they reported a preference for the opposite sex (irrespective of their liking for sex). First, women implicitly preferred men if they also liked sex. Second, men echoed this pattern, but with an important caveat—only if they were high on sexual experience. Thus, men supported our expectation that if they associated women with sex (through sexual encounters that likely lead to emotional conditioning), they would prefer women to the extent they liked sex. By contrast, men low on sexual experience implicitly disliked women to the extent they liked sex. Although we did not expect the latter result, in hindsight it supports emotional conditioning as a source for implicit attitudes. A plausible interpretation is that men who like sex and have their sexual needs fulfilled by women tend to automatically favor women, whereas men who want but are deprived of sex may implicitly resent women.


    In addition, on average, women's generally high self-esteem and feminine identity bolster their automatic liking for women, whereas men's liking for men is not a similar function of their generally high self-esteem and masculine identity. The picture as a whole is one of women having several sources that promote automatic in-group bias (cognitive balance, a match between maternal caregivers and own gender, and male threat beliefs) that are either not shared by men (cognitive balance) or that hinder male preference (maternal nurturance, male threat beliefs). By contrast, both genders share a source that promotes out-group preference (sexual gratification), but this is somewhat weakened for women, who are less enthusiastic about sex. These discrepancies help to explain why women show dramatically greater liking for women than men show for men at the automatic level.
    "I do not know what horrified me most at that time: the economic misery of my companions, their moral and ethical coarseness, or the low level of their intellectual development." Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

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    Re: Why do women like women more than men like men?

    You are right I did not read the study. I have read the citations from it in your second post. I forced myself to read them and had to restart reading them several times because my mind wandered as I read them. I have retained little of what is said in them and would not now want to be tested on their contents. I am not much interested in psychology, although I majored in it for a brief period—until the law of diminishing returns set in. That is, until I found that it was explaining to me less and less what really interested me, i.e., myself. Psychology explains the present in terms of the past; it sees the present individual as a product of his past. It selects (one might say: “harps on”) past influences, usually the earliest influences, to explain why an individual is what he is and does what he does in the present. I do not doubt that it is right to do so in regard to most people, for they are indeed what they are because of their past. However, that is not a good way to be. I hope it is not the case with me or with you, Jennifer. As an reformed-alcoholic grand professor once said to me about psychologists (he was thinking of their capacity to help him, not me, although I’ve always suspected that this obvious nut-case recognized a soulmate in myself), “the thing you really have to fear is that they can help you.” I nodded agreement immediately and knowingly. What he meant was (as I infer; he did not explain any further) that, to the extent that you can be explained in psychological terms and manipulated by others who proffer you such explanations of yourself, you are not much of a person. Why? because great people live in the present and for the future. They are to a large extent free from their past. To put it another way, they are psychologically free from their psychology. Once I discovered that the present would pass very pleasantly if I spent much of it reading great literature and listening to great music, I lost interest in trying to understand myself psychologically, that is, in terms of my past. I do those things because they are intrinsically pleasant in the present; I do not do them because of anything in my past. It is a present pleasure which explains my present behavior. It is true of course that if my past had been much more horrible than it was, I might have turned out bad. It is largely bad people who can be explained by psychology. But I was lucky: I turned out good. Can’t you tell?
    Do not read too much into my earlier post. It was intended merely to point to one obvious truth, that heterosexual men find the presence of a beautiful woman to be not merely pleasant but a great experience, something that makes life intrinsically meaningful. A innocent smile from a beautiful woman is something a man may not be able to get out of his head for a week—or a lifetime. Women don’t react in the same way to the presence of a handsome man. They enjoy it, but it’s just not the same.
    Last edited by Hippy; Friday, February 24th, 2006 at 06:44 PM.

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