Evolution, Feminism and Gender Design

In a blog article titled How to Be Happy evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa (yeah.. I did not know there were such people) advises us on accepting our evolutionary imprint to be happier. Here are a few clips from his post:
Having said that, however, from my perspective as an evolutionary psychologist, I would say that the best thing for people to do to become happier is to get in touch with their animal nature, if not necessarily their inner fish then at the very least their inner ape. Recognize and accept that we are animals. We are all designed by evolution to be certain way, and no amount of denial or fighting will change our evolutionary legacy and its implications.

One of the things that evolution has done is to make men and women very different. In some ways (though not in others), males of one species are often more similar to males of other species than to females of their own species, and vice versa. In some ways, in many ways, men are more similar to male chimpanzees or gorillas than to women. One of the ways that men and women are different is in what makes them happy.

Forget what feminists, hippies, and liberals have told you in the last half century. They are all lies based on political ideology and conviction, not on science. Contrary to what they may have told you, it is very unlikely that money, promotions, the corner office, social status, and political power will make women happy. Similarly, it is very unlikely that quitting their jobs, dropping out of the rat race, and becoming stay-at-home dads to spend all their times with their children will make men happy.
Teach boys and girls that they are different, not the same, and that it’s okay (nay, wonderful) to be different. One is not right and the other is not wrong. Stop telling girls that they are inferior versions of boys, as feminists have done for the last half century, or, as has more recently been the case, stop telling boys that they are inferior versions of girls.

Live as you feel like, not as you think you should live like. Your feelings are seldom wrong, because you are designed to feel certain way by millions of years of evolution. Decades of feminism can’t stop that. You are seldom wrong if you follow your feelings; you are seldom right if you follow feminism or any other political ideology.
If you bristle at the word "evolution" I suggest that you substitute "designed by God" where Kanazawa imposes the evolutionary model. The idea that he is espousing however is that men and women are designed to be different and become frustrated when they try to mimic the aspirations and designs of the opposite sex. Sixty years of living leads me to believe that what he is saying may be right.. just consider how differently you related to your father and mother.

Of course this is a generalization and as such there are exceptions to this idea that the sexes are basically different. But I do think that there is something to the idea that men and women are designed to be different and are happier when they live out of who they are designed to be. What do you think? Any feminists out there?


  1. I'm not a "feminist". To me, that word implies that women are superior to men. I've always said "Men and women are equal. But, we are not the same."

    Of course there are exceptions. But for the most part, there are male traits and there are feminine traits and I think to deny that does lead to frustration and does not lead to happiness.

  2. I think our evolutionary psychologist has some things right and some things WRONG. What he said about accepting our differences is quite right. Difference does not mean inferiority, by golly, look at the immense diversity of our planet! But trusting our feelings? No, I don't think so, Bob. The late Catherine Marshall had it right. FAITH, Facts, and feelings in THAT order. Too many people live only by their feelings which is why we have wars, murder, divorce, addiction, illegitimate parenting, and various other societial ills. The Enemy played on Eve and Adam's emotions which ultimately led them and us to seperation and heartache that will not be healed until He comes again. Feelings are valid and definitely should not be completely discounted, but they are often based on what we want to be true, not necessarily based on TRUTH.

  3. I agree with Kanazawa. I think that he is referring only to our nature not our emotions when he recommends that we act as we feel. I think it is unwise to act only on one's emotions and equally unwise to ever deny our nature.

  4. @Brian - Ditto "Men and women are equal. But, we are not the same."

    @Joe - I felt the same way about what Kanazawa said about feelings. If I wrote it I may have said go with your gut or your inner instincts.

    @crownring - Agree with what you said about feelings even though I do think Kanazawa was speaking more to our instincts.

  5. Interesting article. Despite the obvious differences of world-view, I find much to agree with. I do find it interesting that someone notices the (what seems) obvious contradiction between the logical conclusions of evolution and the prevailing "wisdom" of modern society.

    On a side note, anyone who underestimates the differences between men and women has never tried watching the Three Stooges with their wife.


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