sábado, 3 de mayo de 2014

The Female Brain (English)

Author: Louann Brizendine

Editorial: Harmony

Year: 2007

Genre: Neuropsychiatrist

Ranking: 4/5


Every brain begins as a female brain. Some become male eight weeks after conception, when excess testosterone shrinks the communications center, reduces the hearing cortex & makes the part of the brain that processes sex twice as large. Louann Brizendine, M.D. is a neuropsychiatrist who brings together the latest findings to show how the unique structure of the female brain determines how women think, what they value, how they communicate & whom they’ll love. Brizendine reveals the neurological explanations behind why:

  1. A woman remembers fights that a man insists never happened.
  2. A teen girl is so obsessed with her looks & talking on the phone.
  3. Thoughts about sex enter a woman’s brain once every couple of days but enter a man’s brain about once every minute.
  4. A woman knows what people are feeling, while a man can’t spot an emotion unless somebody cries or threatens bodily harm.
  5. A woman over 50 is more likely to initiate divorce than a man.
Women will come away from this book knowing that they have a lean, mean communicating machine. Men will develop a serious case of brain envy.


Louann Brizendine M.D. (born December 30, 1952) is an American scientist, a neuropsychiatric who is both a researcher and a clinician. She is the author of two books: The Female Brain, and The Male Brain (published in 2010).
Brizendine's research concerns women's moods and hormones. She graduated in neurobiology from UC Berkeley, attended Yale School of Medicine and completed a residency in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. She is board-certified in psychiatry and neurology and is an endowed clinical professor. She joined the faculty of UCSF Medical Center at the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute in 1988 and now holds the Lynne- and Marc Benioff-endowed chair of psychiatry. At UCSF, Brizendine carries out clinical, teaching, writing and research activities.
In 1994 Brizendine founded the UCSF Women's Mood and Hormone Clinic, and continues to serve as its director.
Brizendine also teaches courses to medical students, residents and other physicians throughout the country, on the neurobiology of hormones, mood disorders, anxiety problems, and changes in sexual interest due to hormones.
Brizendine's book "The Female Brain" was reviewed both positively and negatively by numerous critics, especially one piece of content pertaining to linguistics and language. 

My experience with this Book

The Female Brain is a scientific proposal where the author states one specific theory: the female brain is and Works differently to the male brain. The book is composed by 7 chapters, one epilogue, and 3 appendices.

The author then, express in the book every reason and result, from her research about the female brain, that helps sustaining this theory she has and, therefore, women posses behavioral characteristics that men do not have. She does this by developing her 7 chapters dividing them in: Firstly, the stages in a woman’s life such as childhood, adolescence and adulthood; and afterwards, concentrating her arguments in specific topics such as sex, maternity and trust in love and partners.

The book is written from the author’s experience with different case studies she has had. I personally loved this because it explains everything using everyday situations with which many women can identify with. Thus, each one of its arguments is supported by means of an example she narrates from her personal thoughts and information she received from both friends, patients and her students. Like other scientific books, this book also shows other studies which have been done on this topic. With them, the author refutes some provisions and expands and gives reviews of some others.

Despite being a book of scientific aspect I really liked the fact that it can be read freely. The fact that even if you've never studied anything that has to do with this topic or a topic related to this, you can get to enjoy, understand and analyze the book from beginning until the end. The author does not use complicated expressions to explain and analyze each point; she does it by simple examples and daily life experiences with which the reader can come to an understanding of ideas of 90% approximately. I even felt identified in many situations presented in the book - mostly on the part of adolescence.

In order to be a little more objective in the level of evaluation of the book, taking into account that I am a woman, I took the liberty to look for external reviews of the book – mainly done by men. There are those who consider the book sexist (I found women who also said the book was sexist) and those who considered the book very interesting and enriching for their lives.

I do not mean completely to refute this criticism because they are personal opinions based upon own experiences of different people who have read this book. However, my personal opinion about it remains the same. I really liked it. I read it and enjoyed it. Learned, which it is very important to me since I had no idea that my behavior as a woman was different from a guy’s behavior. Also that, things that are completely natural for me are not natural for a man. Moreover, all the qualities that only my brain has but that the brain a man has fails to develop.

I recommend the book to both male and female audience. The women surely will find it as interesting as I did. And for men it may help you understand a little more the behavior of their wives, daughters, girlfriends, sisters, friends, etc. As long as the subject catches your eye I feel that this book is worth reading it.


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