The Myth of Pervasive Misogyny

The Myth of Pervasive Misogyny. By Cory Clark. The evidence has mounted to the point of overwhelming. Just another leftist fantasy promoted for political advantage, to encourage women to vote left, as part of the coalition of the fringes against straight white men.

Many feminists and progressives argue that the West is plagued by pervasive misogyny. In fact, this claim is made with such frequency, and is so rarely challenged, that it has become part of the Left’s catechism of victimhood, repeated by rote without a second thought. The only real question is how powerful and pernicious the misogyny is.

Real-world data, however, suggest a different narrative, complicated by the fact that men have worse outcomes in many domains. For example, they are much more likely to be incarcerated, to be shot by the police, to be a victim of violent crime, to be homeless, to commit suicide, and to die on the job or in combat than women. Furthermore, they have a shorter life expectancy and are less likely to be college educated than women….

The best data from contemporary social science tell a rather different story and suggest that the very persistence of the pervasive misogyny narrative is itself a manifestation of the opposite: society is largely biased in favor of women.


Researchers present participants with identical information that has some bearing on the abilities of males or females while manipulating which sex the information is about.

For example, they might ask two groups of people to evaluate identical essays, telling one group that it was written by a man and the other group that it was written by a woman. If participants who believed the essay was written by a man evaluated it as more compelling, more intelligent, more insightful, and so on than participants who believed it was written by a woman, psychologists would consider that a bias in favor of men. …

Some results:

In two studies, participants were asked to read a popular science article that was experimentally manipulated to suggest that either men or women have a more desirable quality (for example, men/women are better at drawing or men/women lie less often). Participants evaluated the female-favoring research more favorably than the male-favoring research. Specifically, participants found the female-favoring research more important, more plausible, and more well-conducted and found the male-favoring research more offensive, more harmful, more upsetting, and more inherently sexist.

We found a similar pattern for the socially desired trait of intelligence. In two studies, participants read about a (fictitious) scientific study that identified a gene associated with higher intelligence that purported to explain why either (1) men score higher on intelligence tests than women, (2) women score higher on intelligence tests than men, or (3) men and women score roughly equally on intelligence tests. Participants evaluated the scientific study to be similarly credible when it drew the conclusion that men and women score equally on intelligence tests and when women were said to score higher than men, but participants found the study less credible when it suggested that men score higher on intelligence tests than women.

In a related study, participants read about a college entrance exam that is remarkably accurate at predicting academic performance in college. They were told that either men tend to outperform women or that women tend to outperform men on the exam. Participants endorsed use of the exam more when women were said to outperform men than when men were said to outperform women. These findings suggest that people more readily accept the notion that women could be smarter than men than vice versa. …

Well that hardly comes as a surprise to most of us.

Like non-academics, scientists themselves may have preferences for pro-female information over pro-male information. We have also found that people have a stronger desire to censor science that disfavors women. …

These pro-female preferences may explain why mainstream narratives focus so assiduously on the possibility of anti-female biases: society cares more about the wellbeing of women than men and is thus less tolerant of disparities that disfavor them….

When real world disparities exist between men and women, people are more likely to care and more likely to try to engage in corrective behavior when women are at a disadvantage.

One explanation for these pro-female biases is that humans may have evolved a general protectiveness of women. Indeed, numerous reports over the past few decades have shown that people have more sympathy for female than male suffering. For just a few examples, people are less willing to harm a female than a male, women receive more help than men, those who harm women are punished more severely than those who harm men, and women are punished less severely than men for the same crimes. …

Jobs bias?

For example, they point out that women are underrepresented in high-paying STEM careers and leadership positions, and full-time working women earn less than full-time working men. …

In fact, the claim that women are underrepresented in STEM because qualified male job candidates are preferred over equally qualified female job candidates no longer seems plausible. Experimental work suggests that faculty in STEM fields have demonstrated a preference for female applicants over equally qualified male applicants. …

Stereotypes nearly always reflect an underlying reality:

This does not mean, of course, that there are no biases against women. For a long time, women in the West were treated as property and were considered emotional, irrational, and incapable of contributing significantly to higher culture. It is not unimaginable that some of these prejudices still persist and shape society.

For just one example, there seems to be a sort of genius bias against women, such that people more readily associate men with extremely high levels of intelligence than women.

That’s because genius really is heavily skewed male:

IQ intelligence male female

The distribution of g (raw intelligence) in male and female populations. The scale of the horizontal axis is in units of the male standard deviation. Only 37% of humans with IQs over 120 (the bottom of managerial level) are female. As the threshold IQ moves up, the male-female gap only grows larger. Blame God.

This infuriates feminists, but there is nothing they can do short of drastic measures like brain surgery. Making the education system anti-male just hasn’t been enough.

Jordan Peterson on aggression:

One of the reliable differences between men and women cross culturally is that men are more aggressive than women. Now, what’s the evidence for that? Here’s one piece of evidence: there are 10 times as many men in prison. …

OK, so now the question is, “how much more aggressive than women?” The answer is, “not very much.” … If you drew two people out a crowd, one man and one woman, and you had to lay a bet on who was more aggressive, and you bet on the woman, you’d win 40 per cent of the time. … So there are lots of women who are more aggressive than lots of men. … The curves overlap a lot: there’s way more similarity than difference, and this is along the dimension where there’s the most difference, by the way. But here’s the problem: you can take small differences at the average of a distribution; the distributions move off to the side; and then, all the action’s at the tail. …

What you care about is, “who is the most aggressive person out of 100?” You take 100 people, and you take the most aggressive person, because that’s the person you better watch out for. What’s the gender? Men, because if you go three standard deviations out from the mean on two curves that overlap but are slightly disjointed, then you derive an overwhelming preponderance of the overrepresented group. That’s why men are about 10 times more likely to be in prison. It has nothing to do with socialization.

Jordan Peterson on why sex differences increase in freer societies:

What you find is, as the country becomes more egalitarian, the differences between men and women increase. They don’t decrease. …

It’s not a few studies with a couple of people, done by some half-wit psychologists in some tiny universities. It’s population-level studies that have been published in major journals, that have been cited by thousands of people. … We figured this out back in, like, 1995. Everyone thought it was settled. …

As the societies become more egalitarian, the occupational choices between men and women maximize. What that means is that fewer and fewer women go into the STEM fields. Now, no one wanted that. No one predicted it. No one was hoping for it. It actually flew in the face of, I would say, the most established psychological theories. My presupposition certainly was, 20 years ago, that what would have happened, as we made societies more egalitarian, would be that men and women would converge.

That’s not what happened. The biological differences maximized, as we eliminated the sociocultural differences.

The other thing you want to understand is that left-leaning psychologists generated this data. You think, “well, how do you know that?” That’s easy: there are no right-leaning psychologists.

A Johnson:

Misogyny is extremely rare whereas gynocentrism and misandry are common…

I read an article claiming the NHS had ‘failed women’. The reason was that the most recent statistics in Britain showed that the life expectancy of men and women had gone up but the advantage women had over men had declined slightly. I posted a comment that it was very odd to claim a failure when there was an improvement for everyone and a closing of the gap between the advantaged and disadvantaged groups. The results was a barrage of posts that I was a misogynist. …

Violence is overwhelmingly perpetrated against men and boys but we have violence against women and girls campaigns and nothing for boys.

Abuse of children is predominantly committed by women but action to prevent child abuse is focussed on preventing men from having acccess.

In every domain women are advantaged and action is being taken to increase that advantage.


My wife is an elementary school teacher and observes that education is structured to favor girls in everything from the choice of books and stories in language arts to the de-emphasis of physical activity. I believe this is a major factor in the incredible imbalance between men and women earning university degrees.

Does anyone think for a second we wouldn’t be decrying a national sexist crisis if 60% of bachelor’s degrees were being earned by men?


My son and daughter were twins. Both did well in school. In middle school, both were in the honor school club for high-achievers. You stayed in the club if you kept up your grades and didn’t get into trouble.

When my son was in 8th grade, they changed the system. “Trouble” used to be defined as “fighting, hitting, skipping school” – basically felony-level activities. It was changed to include multiple misdemeanors. Low-level actions were now considered enough. Jumping in the halls, whistling, being late – all were considered a misdemeanor. You needed 3 and you were out. I was outraged and had a meeting with the FEMALE principal. She defended this change, for some dumb reason.

Sure enough, by the end of the year, all the boys had been booted from the honor club.

It’s a long article.