Man and Woman: An Inside Storyby Donald W. Pfaff, PhD
The saga of sex differences in brain and behavior begins with a tiny sperm swimming toward a huge egg, to contribute its tiny Y chromosome plus its copies of the other chromosomes. Genetic, anatomic and physiologic alterations in the male ensue, making his brain and behavior different in specific respects from his sister. Brain-wise, specific cell groups develop… See more details below
The saga of sex differences in brain and behavior begins with a tiny sperm swimming toward a huge egg, to contribute its tiny Y chromosome plus its copies of the other chromosomes. Genetic, anatomic and physiologic alterations in the male ensue, making his brain and behavior different in specific respects from his sister. Brain-wise, specific cell groups develop differently in males compared to females, in some cases right after birth and in other cases at puberty. But genetics and neuroanatomy do not dominate the scene. Prenatal stress, postnatal stress and lousy treatment at puberty all can affect males and females in different ways. The upshot of all these genetic and environmental factors produces small sex differences in certain abilities and huge sex differences in feelings, in pain and in suffering. Put this all together and the reader will see that biological and cultural influences on gender roles operate at so many different levels to influence behavioral mechanisms that gender role choices are flexible, reversible and non-dichotomous, especially in modern societies.
"Any writer brave enough to take on this subject needs to be meticulous and unflaggingly skeptical in his or her approach EL Mr. Pfaff is the right man for the job." The Economist
- Oxford University Press, USA
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- 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)
Meet the Author
Donald W. Pfaff graduated from Harvard College magna cum laude and received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1965. He joined The Rockefeller University in 1966 as a postdoctoral fellow and was named assistant professor in 1969. He was granted tenure in 1973 and promoted to full professor in 1978.
Dr. Pfaff is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has served as editor, or on the editorial board, of 21 journals and is author or co-author of more than 800 scientific articles. Dr. Pfaff has also authored, or co-authored, 18 books, all of which deal with brain and behavior. He is the recipient of a National Institutes of Health MERIT Award (2003 to 2013) and received the 2010 Foundation Ipsen Neuronal Plasticity Prize for his studies on the neuroendocrine control of behavior.
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