Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Overzealous Stage Mom Shares Video

My daughter Kaity sings alto in the Women's Chorus at her high school. Last night, she had a solo in the last choral concert of the year. Admittedly, I have no objectivity over the quality of her performance, like I give a damn. In my view, Kaity only had one goal -- face her fears. After a rough couple of years, where we've all had to deal with far too much, this is a personal milestone for her. A little bit of success is a good thing. This summer, Kaity will star in a musical. In another proud moment, she scored a 94% 95% on her last algebra test, and she's taking science in summer school. Take that, Harvard President Lawrence Summers.

Kaity's Solo
"The Boy from New York"
Tucson, Arizona
May 2005

If you'd like to experience the moment, click the photo to start the video clip. If you're unable to view it, you may need to download the QuickTime player.

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mike said...

Lawrence Summers didn't claim that women were inferior by any means. Women everywhere misunderstood, men everywhere knew exactly what he meant the first time. When he apologized, notice that he apologized for (paraphrased) "not taking into account the EFFECT it had" when saying it, while not withdrawing the statement. He didn't say, "I misspoke" but "women misheard" and that he was sorry in that regard :-P

Kim M. Bayne said...

Lawrence gave three main reasons why women are underrepresented: (1) high-powered job hypothesis, (2) different availability of aptitude at the high end, and (3) different socialization with patterns of discrimination. In this second point, his presentation goes awry.

Lawrence points to "human attributes," which include "mathematical" and "scientific ability," and very carefully concludes -- with lots of weasel wording along the way --that women just don't measure up. He backs up his suspicions with repeated references to standard deviations, sliding from English to math-speak and back again; a ploy designed to convince the less rigorous listener. In conclusion, he supports the hypothesis that human attributes (e.g. ineptitude in math and science) are not necessarily culturally determined. And that, my friend, is the straw that broke the camel's back.