When Stereotypes Become ‘Scientific' Statements: Dealing with Gender Issues

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Abstract

The theoretical analysis by Watzlawik (Integrative Psychological & Behavioral Science 2009) demonstrates the scientific fragility of the constructs of masculinity and femininity based on the oversimplification and overlapping between three levels of analysis: group differences, inter-individual differences and intra-individual differences. Watzlawik presents fresh and relevant contributions in terms of methodological issues, especially about the construction of scientific generalizations. Here I focus on issues related to the transformation of stereotypes in statements about gender differences that claim to be ‘scientific'—utlining the socio-political agendas of such statements.

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