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Eugine_Nier comments on LW Women: LW Online - Less Wrong Discussion

29 [deleted] 15 February 2013 01:43AM

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Comment author: Desrtopa 20 February 2013 07:20:11AM 2 points [-]

I'm not sure how much to trust this stereotype. At best it's true as a rule-of-thumb with plenty of exceptions (people with great analytical minds and seemingly natural "people skills" certainly do exist). But if we run with it for a moment, doesn't it seem to screen off gender differences? That is, even if women do tend to lie further towards the "emotional" end of the emotional-analytic spectrum (again, I'm not arguing that this is even a real spectrum, just trying to hash out my confusion), this doesn't matter much because it's only the more analytical women who will give a damn about LW to begin with.

I think this rather incorrectly conflates being "emotional" in the sense of being nonanalytic with being "emotional" in the sense of being sensitive to the actions and opinions of others. While people who don't have analytical inclinations are unlikely to have a place in this community as long as it continues to follow its intended purpose, I don't think that's necessarily the case for sensitive people.

To take an example who immediately comes to mind (and I hope she doesn't mind my using her as an example of such), Swimmer963 has often made references to her own social sensitivity, in the sense of being powerfully affected by what she perceives others around her to think and feel. This certainly doesn't seem to have impeded her in becoming a valuable member here. It also obviously hasn't resulted in her being driven from the community, but if a sensitive individual had a poor initial experience here, it seems very likely that they would decide not to stick around.

Comment author: Eugine_Nier 21 February 2013 06:15:58AM 1 point [-]

I would argue that being sensitive is something one has to at least partially overcome in order to be rational, i.e., one has to be able to ignore the social pressure to conform to popular irrational beliefs.

Comment author: Desrtopa 21 February 2013 02:10:56PM 0 points [-]

There may be a correlation between them, but I think the tendencies to feel the pressure to conform to others' beliefs and to be emotionally affected by the feelings and actions of others are separate.

As Spurlock points out, Yvain also describes himself as being highly sensitive in the latter sense, but having read through the archives of his blog, I don't get the impression that the former is something he's had similar issues with.