Did you find the above pictures odd? That’s the unconscious gender-bias in us.
Mentally flip whoever we’re dealing with, with someone else to test ourselves against our gender-biases.
Watch this insightful talk as Kristen Pressner explores how we can recognize our own hidden, irrational biases — and keep them from limiting us.
What is unconscious gender-bias?
It’s a simple concept backed up by neuroscience: At any given moment, there is too much information for our brains to compute thoroughly. In order to manage it all, our brains take the liberty of looking for patterns of the most important bits on autopilot. In other words, our brains take shortcuts. Without these shortcuts we would have to really sit and think through way too much information all the time to be practical. Imagine if every single time, you had to think through how to open doors, how to shake hands or how to sing happy birthday. Although these shortcuts save us time and energy, they come with a downside: We see patterns based on our accumulative experiences unconsciously. This is why we all suffer from unconscious biases.
What does this have to do with Feminism?
Most of us in society, unconsciously assign these roles to men and women:
Translated to men taking charge, women taking care. This isn’t because you’re an evil misogynist. It’s because thousands of years of patriarchy has reinforced these ideas and made it part of our collective experiences (feeding the unconscious bias).