The Essential Difference

The Essential Difference

Men, Women and the Extreme Male Brain

Summary

Simon Baron-Cohen's The Essential Difference: Men, Women and the Extreme Male Brain is an unflinching look at the scientific evidence behind the innate sex differences of the mind.

Men and women have always seemed to think in entirely different ways, from conversation and communication to games and gadgets. But are these differences created by society, or do our minds come ready-wired one way or another, with female brains tending towards interaction and male towards organisation? And could this mean that autism - rather than being a mental anomaly - is in fact simply an extreme male brain?

Why are female brains better at empathasing? How are male brains designed to analyse systems? And what really makes men and women different? Simon Baron-Cohen explores list-making, lying and two decades of research in a ground-breaking examination of how our brains can be male or female but always completely fascinating.

'Compelling ... Inspiring'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Guardian

'This is no Mars/Venus whimsy, but the conclusion from twenty years of experiment' <br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Evening Standard

'A devastating contribution to the gender debate'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Mail on Sunday

'A fascinating, thought-provoking book'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Observer

Simon Baron-Cohen is Professor at Cambridge University in the fields of psychology and psychiatry. He is also the Director of Cambridge's internationally renowned Autism Research Centre. He has carried out research into social neuroscience over a career spanning twenty years. He is the author of Mindblindness and Zero Degrees of Empathy.

Reviews

  • This is no Mars/Venus whimsy, but the conclusion fron twenty years of experiment
    Evening Standard

About the author

Simon Baron-Cohen

Simon Baron-Cohen is Professor at Cambridge University in the fields of psychology and psychiatry. He is also the Director of the Autism Research Centre there. He has carried out research into social neuroscience over a 20 year career. His popular science book entitled The Essential Difference (Penguin 2003) has been translated in over a dozen languages, and has been widely reviewed.
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