In looking at recent comments on posts put up some time ago, I came across the following remark, (which is in the fifth comment):
It seems to me to be an admirable goal to try and get more men interested in and working in feminist philosophy. In some ways, it’s more important that men be feminists than it is that women be. (For the same reasons that the people you’d *really* like to convince that blacks aren’t inferior to whites are white supremicists, not black people who most likely believe that anyway.)
Do blacks reject the idea that they are inferior to whites? Could a real feminist believe women can’t do as well as men in, say, science?
I was reminded immediately of reading Malcolm Gladwell’s comment that he came out as biased against his own race on the implicit attitude test on race (Blink, pp. 81ff). There are versions for a number of different subjects, including race, women in science and hetereo-homosexuality.
What becomes clear is that many, many of us have picked up biased attitudes in our society and consequently have automatic associations that favor one group over another. It is controversial just what the associations result in, but, as Gladwell says in Blink, the differences hit you on the head as you take the test.
I tried it on race (European vs. African American) and women in science. On both these, I have pretty strong conscious beliefs about equality, and so I was very pleased when I took my first one to find out that the submerged associations I have were in line with my beliefs. I suspected, though, that it might be just that I was very good at taking tests. So I’m glad I took the second one. It hurt my head! And I came out biased against what I believe.
Please consider taking some of the tests, if you haven’t already. They are short. When you’ve had a chance to do so, I’ll confess in the comments to what I found out.