Why men lose keys and women can’t read maps

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  • Brain differences may be due to different historical roles, say scientist

    A new study into differences in the way men and women appreciate art lends scientific weight to the cliché that women can’t read maps, and men are more likely to lose things.

    Researchers showed men and women “beautiful” pictures and discovered that when someone appreciates an image, a region of the brain called the parietal lobe is activated.

    However the research, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that only the right hemisphere of men’s brains were activated. Both hemispheres became active in women.

    The left side of the brain deals with detailed, close-range observation, while the right is better at co-ordinates. This backs up the idea that men are better at orientation, while women are more aware of the objects around them, reports the Daily Telegraph.

    The scientists, led by Dr Francisco Ayala from the University of California, speculate that these brain differences  developed early in human evolution. Hunting, traditionally man’s work, required co-ordinating abilities in order to track animals, while a woman’s traditional work of gathering fruits required closer spatial awareness.


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