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#1377746 - 02/18/10 11:59 PM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Elissa Milne]
cast12 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 219
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
[quote=cast12]

btw, in Australia girls have been outperforming boys in the high school leaving exams for some number of years..... not sure how that anecdote fits into the scheme of things?


I believe you that in general girls will outperform boys in high school exam.Boys, in general, are not as serious and diligent as girls when come to study, but when we compare diligent boys to diligent girls, the statistic will be different. Boys will out perform girls.

Now the same in writing music, top composers are men as we have witnessed for centuries. Basically, when comes to the highest level of any activities, men ,in general, will out perform women.



Ah, no, the diligent girls outperform the diligent boys. The girls are topping the classes, there are more of them in the top cohort, any which way you look at it girls are performing stronger than their numbers would justify - and there have been some inquiries into the education of boys to find out what's going wrong with the kids with the Y chromosome.

Meantime, let's just clarify: you are saying that the achievements of females should be discounted because they are naturally more diligent?

lmao


You're missing the point: at the highest levels of talent and achievement for almost any activity, there are far more men than women. Take the SAT as an example. Men score slightly higher on the verbal section and significantly higher on the math section than do women. However, at the very top of the distribution, there are far more men than women (even though fewer men than women take the test). Moreover, the higher the score level, the higher the gender discrepancy.

The SAT obviously doesn't measure musically ability, but the point remains: at the upper echelons of any activity, men significantly outnumber women.

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#1377748 - 02/19/10 12:00 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: gooddog]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6160
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Originally Posted By: gooddog
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
[quote=cast12]

btw, in Australia girls have been outperforming boys in the high school leaving exams for some number of years..... not sure how that anecdote fits into the scheme of things?


I believe you that in general girls will outperform boys in high school exam.Boys, in general, are not as serious and diligent as girls when come to study, but when we compare diligent boys to diligent girls, the statistic will be different. Boys will out perform girls.

Now the same in writing music, top composers are men as we have witnessed for centuries. Basically, when comes to the highest level of any activities, men ,in general, will out perform women.

Oink. Oink. Now is one of those(many)times I miss Steven's acerbic wit.


I agree with Deborah! I miss SV's comments too.
RS, you made my day.


I posted the link above, but here is the full article:

Gender Differences


by Gina Lynne LoSasso, PhD

Men are smarter than women

False: We all know this one's patently false, so let's bury
it straight away. The fact is that the gals are every bit
as smart as the guys are, and if the truth be told, the
average guy would be quite reluctant to trade the
intelligence and wisdom of the women in his life for
increased cognitive interaction with other men.

The varied intelligences and sensibilities of the sexes
complement each other. This is due to the blending of basic
similarities and the unique perspective that emerges when a
human being develops into a gendered individual.

Women score lower on IQ tests

False: While the average scores on standardized IQ tests for
males (as a group) tend to be slightly higher than for
females, the difference is negligible. IQ tests are
designed to minimize bias in order to be able to make
sensible comparisons between individuals within a larger
population. For that reason, items that are biased against
a particular group - a group distinguished, for example, by
gender or race - are eliminated.

More boys are assessed as mentally retarded than girls

True: While male and female IQ test performance is
statistically equivalent on average, the male and female
score distributions are quite different. There are more men
scoring at both the upper and lower extremes of the normal
distribution curve. This reflects a greater variability of
scores within the male population and results in a
preponderance of males at both tails of the bell curve.

But for the smaller size of female brains, male and female
brains are the same

False: While female brains are slightly smaller than male
brains, the difference is negligible. There are other
structural differences between the male and female brain
that may play greater roles in accounting for differences in
cognitive functioning. These differences include neuronal
density, number of synapses, lateralization and localization
of functioning, and the relative sizes of the lobes,
hemispheres, and corpus callosum.

Hormones exert a significant effect on cognition

True: Not only do hormones exert a profound influence on
emotional behavior, but there is strong evidence of the
relationship between hormone levels and cognitive
functioning. This includes support for a curvilinear
relationship between testosterone levels and spatial
ability, and a linear relationship between estrogen levels
and verbal skills. This effect is profound enough in some
females to diminish the left field advantage, or cause a
shift to right field superiority, when female hormone levels
fall to a minimum during the premenstrual phase.

Additionally, healthy young males given an injection of
female hormones not only showed reduced practice effects on
a spatial task, but significant increases in verbal fluency.

If we gave girl babies more "boy's toys" they'd develop the
same skills as boys

False: The truth is that babies are fed similar fare in the
toy department, with the possible exception of color-coding.
Pink mobiles and rattles work just as well to exercise
spatial and motor coordination as blue ones. However,
certain behavioral factors, such as attitudes and
expectations, can affect a child's intellectual performance.
Whether these factors are internal and self-imposed or
external, like the expectations of parents, teachers and
peers, they act to limit or enhance cognitive ability and
performance regardless of sex.

Homosexual men tend to score in a pattern similar to females
on IQ tests

True: From the limited studies that have been undertaken on
this topic, findings suggest that homosexual men tend to
have patterns of cognitive performance more similar to those
of women than to those of heterosexual men.

Women who are masculine in appearance and personality
usually exhibit a pattern of cognitive ability more similar
to males than to females

True: This is a well-known effect relating to hormonal
influences. To add to the complexity of the situation,
left-handed individuals tend to possess a pattern of
cognitive strengths and weaknesses more similar to
right-handed individuals of the opposite sex! li

Most historical geniuses have been male

True::But while historical figures of genius have typically
been male, there are very strong social, political and
cultural factors that determine who goes down in our history
books...and indeed, what goes down in history, period. The
fact that women's achievements have been routinely
underrepresented in classroom texts is a matter of record.

For a look at some truly marvelous contributions from women
of genius and spirit, visit:

(the link doesn't work any more... frown )

Men are better at arithmetic than women

False: Women excel in skills involving basic arithmetical
calculation. As a group, their performance is superior to
that of men.

In discussions of individual differences, it is important to
note that there is typically a substantial overlap of male
and female score distributions in a particular skill even
when there is a statistically significant inter-gender
difference in that skill. So generalizations are of
limited predictive value on an individual level; when all
you know about a person is gender, it is impossible to
meaningfully speculate about his or her cognitive abilities.

Men have better spatial skills than women

True: This is particularly true regarding tasks that require
mental rotation, a right hemisphere task. This finding is
robust and consistent. However, it does not follow that men
are stronger in right hemisphere functioning in general.
For example, women are distinctly better at recognizing
facial expressions, and some studies show that women have
superior ability to distinguish melodic sound patterns.
Since these too are right hemisphere tasks, it would be
incorrect to say that either gender is better at right
hemisphere tasks. It would be more correct to say that each
gender excels in different kinds of right-hemisphere tasks.

Women have greater focus and are able to stick with a task
longer

False: The opposite is true. This appears to be primarily
related to testosterone levels. Automatization, or
perseverance while engaging in behaviors that do not require
excessive physical or mental exertion (like standing guard
or working on an assembly line), is also related to
testosterone levels.

Women have better verbal skills than men

True::The greatest female advantage appears with respect to
measures of general verbal ability, anagrams, and quality of
speech production. The advantage increases with the
introduction of a memory or learning component that raises
task complexity.

Males have faster processing speed

False: Women consistently outperform men on tests of
psychomotor speed and accuracy based on visual stimuli. The
difference is very pronounced in young children. While the
female advantage persists into adulthood, it gradually
becomes less prominent.

Men are better mathematicians

True: Although the gap has narrowed with the equalization of
opportunity between genders, there is a persistent male
advantage in mathematical performance (at least as it stands
today). This is particularly true in the more advanced
realms of theoretical mathematics and physics.

The differences in ability between the sexes comes down to
genetics

False: There are many factors that contribute to observed
inter-gender differences in cognitive ability. These
include, but are not limited to, biological, environmental,
psychological, hormonal, and socio-cultural factors.

Roles, opportunities, attitudes and expectations have an
extremely significant effect on the development of skills
and talents. These factors are all the more significant
because, in our roles as teachers, parents, peers and
self-actualizing beings, we can modify and control them in
order to maximize the actualization of human potential.

Disclaimer: Contrary studies may exist. The author has
done her best to present some of the most robust,
consistent, and up-to-date findings on these issues.


_________________________



Music is my best friend.


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#1377755 - 02/19/10 12:18 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: cast12]
Elissa Milne Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Originally Posted By: cast12
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
[quote=cast12]

btw, in Australia girls have been outperforming boys in the high school leaving exams for some number of years..... not sure how that anecdote fits into the scheme of things?


I believe you that in general girls will outperform boys in high school exam.Boys, in general, are not as serious and diligent as girls when come to study, but when we compare diligent boys to diligent girls, the statistic will be different. Boys will out perform girls.

Now the same in writing music, top composers are men as we have witnessed for centuries. Basically, when comes to the highest level of any activities, men ,in general, will out perform women.



Ah, no, the diligent girls outperform the diligent boys. The girls are topping the classes, there are more of them in the top cohort, any which way you look at it girls are performing stronger than their numbers would justify - and there have been some inquiries into the education of boys to find out what's going wrong with the kids with the Y chromosome.

Meantime, let's just clarify: you are saying that the achievements of females should be discounted because they are naturally more diligent?

lmao


You're missing the point: at the highest levels of talent and achievement for almost any activity, there are far more men than women. Take the SAT as an example. Men score slightly higher on the verbal section and significantly higher on the math section than do women. However, at the very top of the distribution, there are far more men than women (even though fewer men than women take the test). Moreover, the higher the score level, the higher the gender discrepancy.

The SAT obviously doesn't measure musically ability, but the point remains: at the upper echelons of any activity, men significantly outnumber women.


No I am not missing your point - I am disagreeing with your point. In Australia males do NOT do better in the equivalent of SAT scores, so here you have a large population sample which disproves this global statement you've made about what men and women do achieve.

Now, leaving that aside, let's assume your assertion "men significantly outnumber women in the upper echelons of any activity" is correct: this in itself does not discredit the suggestions that have been put forward about why there are not so many famous female composers (societal pressures and expectations, reduced opportunities, higher female mortality, etc.).
_________________________
Teacher, Composer, Writer, Speaker
Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com

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#1377757 - 02/19/10 12:24 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Elissa Milne]
RonaldSteinway Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/08
Posts: 1510
Originally Posted By: Elissa Milne
Ah, no, the diligent girls outperform the diligent boys. The girls are topping the classes, there are more of them in the top cohort, any which way you look at it girls are performing stronger than their numbers would justify - and there have been some inquiries into the education of boys to find out what's going wrong with the kids with the Y chromosome.

Meantime, let's just clarify: you are saying that the achievements of females should be discounted because they are naturally more diligent?

lmao


Here let me clear. To achieve something you need two things: 1. talent and 2. persistancy.
Most boys are lacking the second variable, however, are stronger in talent. Yet, girls are extremely more diligent and patient to practice to achieve the goals.

Now, when variable 2 is eliminated because top tier players have variable two, only variable one that will differentiate the result. In general, males will win regardless whether the activities are manly or non manly activities. Let's get some examples:

Let's start with female activities that men are better (note: the comparison is between the highest performance,not the average performance)

1. Cutting hair
2. Cooking
3. Making pastries
4. Making dress
5. Making bread
6. Flower arragement
7. home decoration
8. etc etc

Now, male activities

1. all activities, I cannot think any activities that majority women are better.

The only activities that men are not good is doing house chores....Men are totally not talented when come to cleaning house, feeding kids, doing laundries, washing dishes, vacuming, remembering birthday, etc. Women are by far much more talented in these activities. In order for men to perform at woman level, they must practice hard. Women do these activities very naturally.

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#1377762 - 02/19/10 12:34 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
RonaldSteinway Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/08
Posts: 1510
We are not talking about mid level performance....We are talking the highest performance level.

The OP asked why there has not been a famous female composer. The reason is that female just are unable to attain that level. Again, we are talking at the highest level of achievement. Otherwise, there should have been many females attaining that level. It is only writing notes on a piece of paper, no physical requirement to write music...It is totally brain power.

I just do not understand why people are so defensive about this kind of thing. Every race, gender, etc has its strengths and weaknesses.

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#1377763 - 02/19/10 12:35 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Kreisler]
AnotherSchmoe Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/15/06
Posts: 499
Loc: Arkansas
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Here's an excellent Greek composer. (Well, okay, he's from Cyprus, but it's close!)

http://www.tsitsaros.com/


While not so much piano related, Vangelis is another great Greek composer. More into synth type stuff but did great work on Chariots of Fire, Blade Runner etc.
_________________________

http://www.youtube.com/user/AnotherSchmoe

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#1377764 - 02/19/10 12:37 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
Achillies Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 2
The aptitude for abstract thinking:



There have been no women of genius and very few of considerable talent in chess, mathematics and musical composition and any other pursuit for which a high level aptitude for abstract reasoning is a necessary condition( while there have been many women of genius in literature and the performing arts, areas which have the least requirement for abstract reasoning)!



If M. Curie seems an exception there is a strong case that her contrbutions were experimental(empirical) not theoretical. That does not diminish her contributions but is consistant with the premise of the discussion here. And if you wish to argue that she was a theoretician then she is the exception that proves the rule.



A greater male aptitude for abstract reasoning has been identified in a wide range of cognitive tests and has been observed so often through out recorded history that we have the stereotype that 'men are more logical than women' and that a certain type of rigorous abstract thinking represents 'thinking like a man'. Just like tests and historical observation lead us to say that ‘women are more perceptive, intuitive and discerning of how people feel and what they might be thinking'



These measured observations and stereotypes measure and reflect male superiority in an aptitude that is a necessary condition for genius in mathematics and related areas and a great advantage for even the lesser ability that is necessary for the usual professional work in these areas, i.e., an applied mathematician vs a theoretical mathematician.



These measurements and observations are sufficient to explain why all those MOST gifted with this aptitude, i.e., abstract reasoning, are males. There is very strong logical and physiological evidence that male superiority in the aptitude for abstract reasoning is rooted in physiology (testosterone and its effect on the architecture of the brain)!

In test scores, the male advantage is most pronounced in the most abstract items. Historically, too, it is most pronounced in the most abstract domains of accomplishment.

In the humanities, the most abstract field is philosophy—and no woman has been a significant original thinker in any of the world’s great philosophical traditions. In the sciences, the most abstract field is mathematics, where the number of great women mathematicians is approximately two (Emmy Noether definitely, Sonya Kovalevskaya maybe). In the other hard sciences, the contributions of great women scientists have usually been empirical rather than theoretical, with leading cases in point being Henrietta Leavitt, Dorothy Hodgkin, Lise Meitner, Irene Joliot-Curie, and Marie Curie herself.

In the arts, literature is the least abstract and by far the most rooted in human interaction; visual art incorporates a greater admixture of the abstract; musical composition is the most abstract of all the arts, using neither words nor images. The role of women has varied accordingly. Women have been represented among great writers virtually from the beginning of literature, in East Asia and South Asia as well as in the West. Women have produced a smaller number of important visual artists, and none that is clearly in the first rank. No female composer is even close to the first rank. Social restrictions undoubtedly damped down women’s contributions in all of the arts, but the pattern of accomplishment that did break through is strikingly consistent with what we know about the respective strengths of male and female cognitive repertoires. Women have their own cognitive advantages over men, many of them involving verbal fluency and interpersonal skills.

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#1377765 - 02/19/10 12:40 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
BruceD Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18292
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
[...]
I just do not understand why people are so defensive about this kind of thing. Every race, gender, etc has its strengths and weaknesses.


Yes, and there are also racists, feminists and male chauvinists ... When that line is crossed, the targeted ones get justifiably defensive.

Regards,
_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#1377768 - 02/19/10 12:41 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
RealPlayer Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 2359
Loc: NYC
Now I remember why I'm so reluctant to open any PW thread on women composers. They generally go downhill fast.
_________________________
Joe

www.josephkubera.com

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#1377778 - 02/19/10 01:02 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RealPlayer]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13818
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Something I find interesting is that it seems to be a lot easier for women to break into the top ranks as performers than as composers. Whereas we're having difficulty coming up with well-known present day female composers, the list of female performers is relatively long and includes two of the greatest artists of our century - Alicia de Larrocha and Martha Argerich.

And on violin, the current roster of top artists may actually have more women than men:

Hillary Hahn, Midori, Laura St. John, Leila Josefowicz, Sarah Chang, Kyung-Wha Chung, Nadja Solerno-Sonnenberg, and Anne Sophie Mutter.

And arguably the most famous cellist in history was female - Jacqueline du Pre. (Well, she's at least in the top 5.)
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1377786 - 02/19/10 01:12 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
Elissa Milne Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/11/10
Posts: 1337
Loc: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
We are not talking about mid level performance....We are talking the highest performance level.

The OP asked why there has not been a famous female composer. The reason is that female just are unable to attain that level. Again, we are talking at the highest level of achievement. Otherwise, there should have been many females attaining that level. It is only writing notes on a piece of paper, no physical requirement to write music...It is totally brain power.

I just do not understand why people are so defensive about this kind of thing. Every race, gender, etc has its strengths and weaknesses.


continuing to lmao

Honestly, it boggles the mind to think there are people who actually believe this. If this is the view you hold you will surely find ways to justify it.
_________________________
Teacher, Composer, Writer, Speaker
Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com

Top
#1377790 - 02/19/10 01:17 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Kreisler]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8935
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Kreisler

And arguably the most famous cellist in history was female - Jacqueline du Pre. (Well, she's at least in the top 5.)

More famous for being famous. Her EMI Elgar concerto notwithstanding (with Barbirolli), she tended to be awfully inconsistent, even as a young lass. I consider Fournier, Casals and Rostropovich far greater cellists. Your piano and violin examples, are, however, spot on.

But in violin, the guys, at least, have the divine Joshua Bell.
_________________________
Jason

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#1377792 - 02/19/10 01:26 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Elissa Milne]
Achillies Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 2
the issue is COMPOSERS not PERFORMERS!

the ability to create(compose) music is as i said the most abstract art, the ability to perform someting that someone else has already envisoned is like reading a novel someone else has written. I can read and maybe even act in a play by Shakespheare but could never come up with the profound insight into the human condition that he did.

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#1377800 - 02/19/10 01:40 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
beet31425 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3836
Loc: Bay Area, CA
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
We are not talking about mid level performance....We are talking the highest performance level.

The OP asked why there has not been a famous female composer. The reason is that female just are unable to attain that level. Again, we are talking at the highest level of achievement. Otherwise, there should have been many females attaining that level. It is only writing notes on a piece of paper, no physical requirement to write music...It is totally brain power.

I just do not understand why people are so defensive about this kind of thing. Every race, gender, etc has its strengths and weaknesses.


Let me pose my framing again, this time to you directly, RonaldSteinway.

If what you say is true, why are there many female authors "at the highest level of achievement"? George Elliot, Virginia Woolf, Doris Lessing, A. S. Byatt, etc. I purposely do not list "romantic period piece" authors, like Jane Austen, just to prevent the counter-argument that famous woman authors simply write period romances. (A counter-argument I do not believe.) The list goes on: Gertrude Stein, Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro. For sheer intellectual brilliance and literary genius, these woman are at the very top of the game.

This is why I think the lack of woman composers is due to a subtle societal influence.

So: I think your claim is nonsense, and offer this argument as a proof. Dispute the point (although your popularity rating can't be very stable right now) or hold your peace.

-Jason
_________________________
Schubert Immersion: Bb Impromptu; C# minor and Ab Moments Musicaux; accompanying four songs (Suleika II, Rastlose Liebe, Du Liebst Mich Nicht, Im Fruhling); listening intensely to Die Schne Mllerin and Winterreise

Chopin: first Ballade; Mozart: D minor concerto;

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#1377803 - 02/19/10 01:41 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Achillies]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8935
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Achillies
the issue is COMPOSERS not PERFORMERS!

Well of course you make a good point.

I follow composers for the Anglican Communion closely, and I can tell you that there are a number of very fine females writing music for the Church. I've admired many of their compositions (particularly Judith Bingham), but none have so far crossed over to repertory status as, say, Patrick Gowers with his anthem Viri Galilaei.
_________________________
Jason

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#1377804 - 02/19/10 01:43 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Kreisler]
Nikolas Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5429
Loc: Europe
I find it interesting that in almost every page of the thread a Greek (ok, Cypriot) composer comes up! laugh LOL! (And YAY at the same time).

Now, I would attempt to argue with Ronald, but I fear that I will be accused of becoming a male composer, because... I couldn't make it as a female one! :D:D:D

RealPlayer: What did you expect from a thread with a subject "Why there are no women composers". The first page was enough for me to understand this thread was doomed to inflamatory posts and ideas... frown
_________________________
http://www.musica-ferrum.com

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#1377809 - 02/19/10 01:51 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Nikolas]
Frozenicicles Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/02/09
Posts: 1324
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Now, I would attempt to argue with Ronald, but I fear that I will be accused of becoming a male composer, because... I couldn't make it as a female one! :D:D:D

There there, Nikolas - never say never! I wonder why you're interested in this topic at all, Ronald? I thought that composers are only musician wannabes. In that case, I'd expect that women would excel in composition... Or maybe we're so sadly deficient that even being a good wannabe is out of the question. frown

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#1377821 - 02/19/10 02:24 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: beet31425]
cast12 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 219
Originally Posted By: beet31425


Let me pose my framing again, this time to you directly, RonaldSteinway.

If what you say is true, why are there many female authors "at the highest level of achievement"? George Elliot, Virginia Woolf, Doris Lessing, A. S. Byatt, etc. I purposely do not list "romantic period piece" authors, like Jane Austen, just to prevent the counter-argument that famous woman authors simply write period romances. (A counter-argument I do not believe.) The list goes on: Gertrude Stein, Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro. For sheer intellectual brilliance and literary genius, these woman are at the very top of the game.

This is why I think the lack of woman composers is due to a subtle societal influence.

So: I think your claim is nonsense, and offer this argument as a proof. Dispute the point (although your popularity rating can't be very stable right now) or hold your peace.

-Jason



As many posters in this thread have pointed out, gender differences are far less pronounced in verbal ability than in mathematician and spacial reasoning ability. Thus, it's unsurprising that there have been many great female authors in history. But still, the greatest authors in history have been overwhelming men.

I'm not denying that social factors prevented many women from composing during the peak of classical music. I'm just pointing out that even if women had been able to compose more easily during the 1700's and 1800's, we still wouldn't have a female Chopin or Brahms, let alone Bach or Beethoven

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#1377830 - 02/19/10 02:51 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Nikolas]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: Nikolas

Now, I would attempt to argue with Ronald, but I fear that I will be accused of becoming a male composer, because... I couldn't make it as a female one!



You mean you think that having a sex change would also take away your compositional ability? smirk

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#1377835 - 02/19/10 03:07 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Frozenicicles]
pno Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 1042
Loc: ♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Originally Posted By: Frozenicicles
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
Now the same in writing music, top composers are men as we have witnessed for centuries. Basically, when comes to the highest level of any activities, men ,in general, will out perform women.

Wow. I now understand why some people are driven to extreme feminism. Now, imagine looking your own mother in the eyes and telling her that.


Actually, it's my mom who first told me that guys perform better even in the domains that are traditionally considered female activities, and I totally agree with her.

One exception: bearing children. No man can do it better than woman. That's for sure!

Political correctness can blind and sometimes does. One needs to prove oneself by doing, not by activism.
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#1377837 - 02/19/10 03:19 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: pno]
Elene Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/07
Posts: 1420
Loc: under monsoon clouds
A sad, sad thread. People at PW are relatively educated, yet there is so much prejudice and ignorance.

And HELLOOO, there have been a number of female composers in history whose names we still know today-- i.e., they are famous. Some, but not all, have been mentioned here.

"Actually, it's my mom who first told me that guys perform better even in the domains that are traditionally considered female activities, and I totally agree with her."

I'd love to know your mom's qualifications and her evidence for making this statement. You haven't presented any. However, I won't be returning to this thread to read any more-- it's far too depressing.

Elene
(I'm not a composer, but my DAUGHTER is.)
_________________________
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Blog: http://elenedom.wordpress.com
Website: http://elenelistens.com






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#1377839 - 02/19/10 03:23 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: cast12]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: cast12

I'm not denying that social factors prevented many women from composing during the peak of classical music. I'm just pointing out that even if women had been able to compose more easily during the 1700's and 1800's, we still wouldn't have a female Chopin or Brahms, let alone Bach or Beethoven


What you are "just pointing out" is something about yourself, I'm afraid, and nothing at all about whether we would have "great" women composers had all external factors been equal with to those affecting men.

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#1377850 - 02/19/10 03:31 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: pno]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: pno

Actually, it's my mom who first told me that guys perform better even in the domains that are traditionally considered female activities, and I totally agree with her.



So you mom's poor self esteem is a source of your problem with perspective. I'm starting to get the picture...

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#1377851 - 02/19/10 03:32 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: RonaldSteinway]
LimeFriday Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/09
Posts: 303
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway


Let's start with female activities that men are better (note: the comparison is between the highest performance,not the average performance)

1. Cutting hair
2. Cooking
3. Making pastries
4. Making dress
5. Making bread
6. Flower arragement
7. home decoration
8. etc etc

Now, male activities

1. all activities, I cannot think any activities that majority women are better.

The only activities that men are not good is doing house chores....Men are totally not talented when come to cleaning house, feeding kids, doing laundries, washing dishes, vacuming, remembering birthday, etc. Women are by far much more talented in these activities. In order for men to perform at woman level, they must practice hard. Women do these activities very naturally.


I would love to give you the benefit of the doubt and believe that you wrote this tongue in cheek... but I fear you truly believe in this outrageous, dated load of ****.

And you wonder why more women have not risen to the top in various spheres... not only do woman have to have the talent, determination and persistence to achieve... we have to battle beliefs and attitudes such as this.


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#1377857 - 02/19/10 03:45 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: LimeFriday]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: LimeFriday
Quote:
there have been numerous studies showing that there are twice as many men falling on the 'extremes' as women. Here's an example of one study conducted by numerous doctors at top universities


If you also read the scientific studies on IQ tests you'll find plenty of evidence to show that these are flawed and do not accurately represent intelligence, genius or otherwise.

Most intelligence tests and studies were written and designed by men - originally to test men. Bias and skewed results abound!


Not only all that, but what they really measure is the ability to take tests. There is not even real agreement as to what "intelligence" even is, much less a method of testing it.

And no, I am not saying that because I tested poorly and want to make excuses for it. But it is blindingly obvious to me that doing well on IQ and aptitude tests is not a measure of anything worth calling intelligence.

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#1377858 - 02/19/10 03:48 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: cardguy]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: cardguy
These are dangerous waters, and I consider myself a feminist, but I don't I like the politically correct tenor of the discussion. There does actually seem to be a scarcity of women composers, even if you factor in all the societal stuff. The operative word is "seem" as obviously I can't prove it.

But would it be so horrible if it turned out there was something in the male brain that makes it more likely they'll be better at composing music? I can't cite them, but I do believe reading that there are studies indicating men are better at mechanical thinking, including spacial relations than women. I'm also almost certain there are studies that support the idea there are differences in the way men and women process language.

My point is, there are difference between the male and female brain. This isn't bad, or sexist in and of itself. it simply is.

So go ahead all you p.c.'ers. Savage me if you must. I can take it :>)


Since you more or less announced that anyone who might disagree with you is merely being politically correct, what's the point?

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#1377865 - 02/19/10 04:01 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: Seabelle]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: Seabelle

As far as female composers are concerned, I'm not sure I find that IQ argument very convincing. Marilyn vos Savant probably has a far higher IQ (by 21st Century standards) that say... Bach, who would have been educated to a very modest standard by both our standards and contemporary standards of those living in more affluent areas such as The Dutch Republic.



There is very little evidence that, taken as a group, famous male composers had especially high IQs. In fact, some seemed to have problems with being rational at all!! Plenty of them didn't seem make their way in the world very effectively, and more or less stumbled through life in not particularly intelligent ways.

And on the math issue, I've read that Beethoven was quite poor at it (which possibly accounts for some weird metronome indications). He never even learned how to multiply, and if, for example, he wanted to know what 8 X 4 was, he would arrive at the answer by a series of additions, like this: "Eight and eight are sixteen; sixteen and eight are twenty-four; and twenty-four and eight is thirty-two".



Edited by wr (02/19/10 04:01 AM)

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#1377869 - 02/19/10 04:07 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: LimeFriday]
pno Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 1042
Loc: ♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Originally Posted By: LimeFriday
...And you wonder why more women have not risen to the top in various spheres... not only do woman have to have the talent, determination and persistence to achieve... we have to battle beliefs and attitudes such as this.



I think the feminist movement has spent way too much time and effort "battling beliefs and attitudes". Don't you think if those activists spent their time composing, they would have gotten better results?
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#1377873 - 02/19/10 04:12 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: wr]
Nikolas Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5429
Loc: Europe
You know...

There was a discussion on talent. I mentioned I don't REALLY believe in it, in the sense of a gift from parents, or God, prior to birth. There is a thread about that in the teachers forum.

So, if talent is not exactly there, and is overated (there's a couple of books about that), then why should genre be any different? We are all born with equal abilities, but unfortunately unequal opportunities still, and are altered in the process of our lives.

This thread is a solid indication that social reasons are STILL keeping women out of certain job aspects! If you consider the beliefs of certain members here... Yes, Elene, it's sad but also brings out the truth in the most unimpressive way: It's us (humans) that make things happen and noone else!

(By all means, I'm not supporting that male and female are absolutely the same. We have differences, but I find no reason to choose between a male and a female...)
_________________________
http://www.musica-ferrum.com

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#1377877 - 02/19/10 04:20 AM Re: Why We Dont Have Famous Female Composer In History ? [Re: cast12]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: cast12

You're missing the point: at the highest levels of talent and achievement for almost any activity, there are far more men than women.


If measuring talent and achievement in making posts reflecting less than average intelligence in PW threads regarding women composers, I would have to agree: the men are winning, hands down. Well done, guys.

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