Another nail in the Blank Slate coffin where men and women supposedly get socialized into their different preferences and behaviors. Researcher Karen Redwine at Whittier College and Paul Zak at Claremont University found that a testosterone cream made men less generous. DHT (dihydrotestosterone) had an even more dramatic effect.
The testosterone cream worked. The next day, twice as much of the potent sex hormone coursed through the veins of volunteers, on average.
The students then played a simple economic game with another participant via a computer. One volunteer is tasked with splitting $10 with another volunteer in any way he likes. The other volunteer either accepts the offer or rejects it as unfair, in which case no one gets any money. Each volunteer played this game in both roles, on and off the testosterone gel.
Overall, the testosterone cream caused a 27 per cent reduction in the generosity of the offers, from averages of $2.15 to $1.57, Redwine and Zak found.
Testosterone also made men more inclined to punish people who made unfair offers. Testosterone is therefore the enforcer of justice. One wonders what is the net effect of combining a smelly room with testosterone. War or an efficient system of justice?
An experiment I'd like to see: Do finasteride and dutasteride make men basically less selfish? These drugs block the conversion of testosterone into DHT. Also, do these drugs cause a long term decrease on the ability to do spatial reasoning? Or perhaps testosterone causes some male cognitive features and DHT causes others. So perhaps the drugs cause increases in some male tendencies and decreases in others.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2009 October 26 10:58 PM Brain Sex Differences|