“Brilliance” and diversity

A study published today in PLOS ONE tracked disciplinary differences in “brilliance”-related vocabulary on RateMyProfessors, finding that “a field’s focus on brilliance predicted the magnitude of its gender and race gaps”.

ADDENDUM: as pointed out in the comments, one of the co-authors of this article is a philosopher, Sarah-Jane Leslie (Princeton), and the work continues a project previously reported on this blog and elsewhere.

3 thoughts on ““Brilliance” and diversity

  1. Wish I could find the quote from years ago when teaching a feminism course. A college president remarked something like this: ‘We expect our girls to be good, solid, hard-working students; we don’t expect them to be brilliant or innovative’. Wish I could find that reference (off to google)

    When I was a kid they used to say something like this about the Japanese: they could only copy.

    This really is the stereotype. Not boys are smart–girls are dumb but girls are good–boys are bad. Girls are Good: solid and mediocre, hardworking, obedient and tidy; easy to deal with, not a problem. Boys are Bad: dangerous and anti-social or flashy, erratic and brilliant; they have to be dealt with because they’re potentially dangerous, and potentially brilliant.

  2. Perhaps the original post could be updated to note that this article is co-authored by a philosopher, Sarah-Jane Leslie of Princeton University, and it continues work earlier reported on this blog and elsewhere.

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