Chilli And Gender Specific Risk

I think I maybe have a bit of unfair reputation for not being a risk taker.

I disagree.  Tonight, for example, I put chilli in my dinner.  That might not sound like a big deal to most people, but those who have seen me eat curry or spicy ribs will know that I dissolve when I try spicy food.

A group of feminist academics claim that many past studies showing that men have a greater appetite than women for risk were rigged by questions that defined risk in terms of behaviours that are more normative for men.

The Times reports that that academics are feminist… Michelle Ryan describes herself as such on her Twitter profile, but lead author  and Cordelia Fine, while having obvious interest in gender politics, don’t have anything I can find online to suggest explicitly that they are feminist.

The researchers questioned 99 Americans about risk using both a conventional measure and their own scale using risks they decided women were more likely to encounter.  They found that men scored higher on “masculine” tasks but this was reversed with “feminine” tasks relating to safety and health.  Financial and social risks were gender neutral.

So what were the questions?

Usual “masculine” questions

  • Bet a day’s income on a high-stake poker game?
  • Ride a motorbike with no helmet?
  • Take a skydiving class and make one jump?

Alternative “feminine” questions

  • Spend a day’s income on designer clothes on a cheap, disreputable website?
  • Spend a day’s income on a spa holiday with fixed dates allocated at the last minute?
  • Ride a horse for 90 minutes with no helmet?

Other “female risks” were “cooking a difficult dish for a party, going on an extreme diet, playing netball and starting an online petition”.

What are your thoughts to those questions and risks? I heard the story on wireless, and both male a female presenters were taken aback to say the least.  They seemed staggeringly stereotypical and a distance away from what you would expect to be produced by gender politicians, which makes me wonder where it leaves that subject.

And why did no-one ask specifically about chillies?

You can’t talk
I’m anxious
I’m off the walls
I’m right here just
Come outside
And see it
But pack your heart
You might need it

I’ll find a way
I’m confused though
But I think I can try
I will save your life
I will save your life
I’ll try for you

You’re locked up
You exhaled
You did it before
And I seen it
Come outside
And breath in
Relax your arms
And let me in

I’ll find a way
I’m confused though
But I think I can try
I will save your life
I will save your life
I’ll try for you

I know what to say to take you
Higher, higher
No one else can take you higher
But I will try

I’ll find a way
I’m confused though
But I think I can try
I will save your life
I will save your life
I’ll try for you

I’ll find a way
I’m confused though
But I think I can try
I will save your life
I will save your life
I’ll try for you

For you

Risk by Deftones

 

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