[MUD-Dev] Male and female brains

John Arras johna at wam.umd.edu
Thu May 8 17:32:14 New Zealand Standard Time 2003


On Wed, 7 May 2003, Marian Griffith wrote:

> I still maintain that there is such things as a
> "girls like this" or "boys like that" possible. Considering the way
> games are marketed almost to the deliberate exclusion of girls,  it
> is a surprise to find any girl playing games at all.  Of those that
> do they are conditioned in two directions. By the game that strong-
> ly focus on violent competitive subjects with a high degree of spa-
> tial coordination (which boys tend to excell at)  while society and
> culture strongly disapprove of such an interest in girls.  I do not
> know if girls play The Sims  because they enjoy it or because it is
> one of the few games  that is socially acceptable for them to play,
> and  that is actually marketed towards girls as well.

Why do girls play with dolls and boys play with action figures?

I don't know for sure, but I think whatever causes that to happen is
the same mechanism at work here. And I know I'm stereotyping, but
this is what I remember from my childhood, and just about every
other child I've ever seen. I don't know if we're hardwired that
way, or society makes us play in those ways, but it's probably the
same underlying principle that makes the Sims is so popular with
girls and women.

It's probably also why so many devs don't get the Sims, since it
triggers the visceral "Ewww Barbies! Those are for girls!" response.

John


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