Do men and women have different brains? Science settles this age-old debate 52



View Profile

Has your husband ever accused you of being incapable of map-reading? Have you ever teased him for not being a better communicator? Often we attribute these differences in male and female behaviour to the ways our brain operate, but is that a fair assumption?

While science has always accepted a categorical difference between male and female genitalia – the ‘gender’ of human brains has normally left room for debate. Now a newly published study has revealed that brains are better understood as ‘a unique mosaic of features,’ that comprise a spectrum between male and female.

Using extensive MRI scans, researchers examined the white matter, grey matter and connective brain tissues of more than 1400 people. These scans could not reveal any consistent differences between male and female brains, with the report concluding “human brains cannot be categorised into two distinct classes.”

The study’s author, Professor Daphna Joel, explained that people typically over-estimate how hormones can influence the human brain: “The theory goes that once a fetus develops testicles, they secrete testosterone which masculinises the entire brain.”

“It that were true, there would be two types of brains – male brains in boys and female brains in girls,” Joel said. Instead, Joel’s team noticed significant overlaps in the ways that male and female brains are structured.

“Our study suggests that there are many ways to be male, and many ways to be female,” explains Joel. Socialisation, gender perception and desires all play an important role in determining ‘who’ we are.

Do you believe your brain is wired to be particularly male, or particularly female?


Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Men run from shopping. They have a ‘one track mind’ can only cope with one task at a time. Bit like a horse with blinkers. They are good at what they do, but multi tasking is not one of them that’s why they have secretaries and office works.

    2 REPLY
  2. I am really bad at map reading,if you ask me to navigate we would probably end up in the bush somewhere, I am no expert but it probably goes back to Hunter gather days, men had to navigate huge area’s to chase game. But with GPS today things are so much easier.

    1 REPLY
  3. I can’t imagine our brains would look any different, we are the same species !! It probably has to do with how ours brains are wired

  4. I believe,( I could be wrong,) that it has been proven scientifically that our brains work differently.
    Basically they are the same but as Leanna said, we are wired differently.
    Some more than others.
    I can’t think of anything worse than trying to shop with someone who hates it.
    But I am good at map reading.

    1 REPLY
  5. I believe women’s brains are – well shall we say an updated and better version. 😉. Oh no, I can feel all those things being thrown at me already…😛

  6. I’m hopeless at reading maps that’s why I got myself a GPS years ago, yes I know they also make mistakes on the software at times however generally they are pretty accurate.

  7. Yes , men can lead one down the wrong road and women are very specific re shopping, they like diamonds, 😊!

  8. Hey what am i i can read maps n i like to shop.. men r good just replacing the batteries of our toys giving us direction whose the best mechanic n then we’d think about it.. any thing they recommend we have 2 suss it out.. maybe their mums taught them 2 cook. N taught them manners wow if i could find a bloke like that id be happy

  9. I can’t read a map, utterly hopeless. But my husband is useless at shopping, he doesn’t look at price/value just grabs the first thing he sees. I think this is just because this is how we are raised and the roles we have chosen as a married couple.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *