"Women's Brains" Assignments


Due Mon., June 2

"Women's Brains" (click here if you lost the copy I gave you)

Pre-Reading Activity for “Women’s Brains”

React to the statement below (agree, disagree, explain your reasons).

  •  Science is objective.

React to the paragraph below.

In the most intelligent races, as among the Parisians, there are a large number of women whose brains are closer in size to those of gorillas than to the most developed male brains.  This inferiority is so obvious that no one can contest it for a moment; only its degree is worth discussion.  All psychologists who have studied the intelligence of women, as well as poets and novelists, recognize today that they represent the most inferior forms of human evolution and that they are closer to children and savages than to an adult, civilized man.  They excel in fickleness, inconstancy, absence of thought and logic, and incapacity to reason.  Without doubt there exist some distinguished women, very superior to the average man, but they are as exceptional as the birth of any monstrosity, as, for example, of a gorilla with two heads; consequently, we may neglect them entirely.


Take note of your thoughts, feelings and questions as you go along (you might want to do this in the margins of your article.)  You will not turn this in, but it will help you complete your Post-Reading activity.

Post-Reading Activity for “Women’s Brains”

Write a personal response to the essay (see pages 249-250 in your Write for College book for more information if needed) and make it as editorial as you please.  In your response, please include a discussion of the following (at least):

  • Your experience reading this essay, starting with your initial thoughts while reading and how your thinking changed/continued as you read more.
  • Discuss some specific points of interest in the essay and your specific reactions to them, including why you had those reactions.
  • Make some connections.  You might want to connect between the essay and your life, something else you’ve read, your beliefs, etc.
  • Reflect on the essay.  You might touch on what you’ve learned, what questions you still have, any significance you see in it, thoughts about the author, etc.


Post your thoughts on-line for extra credit.  Click here for the blog.