A logical champion stands against the emotional horde in /r/TrollXChromosomes

two assumptions that have never been addressed by either critics or supporters - that one cannot be both a systemizer and an empathizer, and that interest and ability cannot be divorced from one another. often used as evidence that inequality doesn't exist and that disparities exist only because of biological reasons is that women are reported as having more interest and ability in subjects that require empathy while men are more interested and have more ability with subjects that require systemizing. this however has never been proven as being a purely biological phenomenon - but has been linked several times to men typically being more lateralized, which means they have more domain specificity in parts of their brain, while women have larger corpus colosum and interconnectivity and therefore are better empathizers. what has never truly been tested is whether or not lateralization has more to do with brain size and the required neuroanitomical constrains that having a larger or smaller brain would have, or whether empathizing and systemizing are purely due to those particular neuroanatomical differences. another layer to this is the assumption that not only is males lateralization the reason for their supposed greater ability to systemize and lesser ability to empathize, but that these differences are not and cannot be functional but must be genetically derived. another way to put this is that while it may be easier to claim that men's systemizing is a biological adaptation, it may have nothing to do with neuroanatomy at all.

on top of all of this is that many of the techniques (and motivations) used to support such science are in their infancy, which has lead to some pre-assumptions that cannot be made at our current stage. whole brain fmri techniques have recently shown that there are no lateralization differences at all between men and women (as a note, the same study has been used to disprove assumptions made about left brain right brain lateralization and 'artisitic vs scientific' inherited capability).

lateralization of brain connections appears to be a local rather than global property of brain networks, and our data are not consistent with a whole-brain phenotype of greater “left-brained” or greater “right-brained” network strength across individuals. Small increases in lateralization with age were seen, but no differences in gender were observed.

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