on 10 March 2005
Fast moving and colourful, Sex, Lies and Stereotypes by Dr Gary Wood is a slim volume that could be read in a week-end, but you won't want to read it that quickly; you'll want to digest and discuss with friends and lovers some of the eclectic ideas and evidence presented before reading on, maybe even compare scores on some of the quizzes designed to reflect back attitudes on sex and gender to the reader.
The book is an intelligent response to the kind of books (typified by the different planet mentality) that perpetuate the myth that what divides men and women is more important than what unites us as human beings; an example of what he refers to as binary thinking. The last chapter is wonderfully titled, "Men are from earth and women are from earth, get over it."!!!
The book draws together research and ideas from a broad spectrum that includes the classics, anthropology, biology and psychology, but the tone is conversational, witty and openly persuasive. Dr Wood has a knack of making facts funny and memorable. I will always think of Procrustes now as "a kind of Greek Basil Fawlty".
Ultimately, this book is a plea that we embrace and celebrate the notion of complexity in our relationships; that we move beyond a polarising and adversarial stance, in favour of seeking win/win solutions for our own health as well as for the good of others. He concludes with advice on how we might go about improving our communications with others. I found the book highly enjoyable, thought provoking and useful and ultimately reassuring.
on 24 February 2006
Great to find a relationship book that actually has something new to say and indeed challenge some of the well worn paths that books usually cover. The book makes serious points in a fun and lively way and looks at the biases we have in society about men, women and relationships. The book is back with thought-provoking quizzes and tips and challenges us to look at what we have in common (star dust) rather thanb exaggerate the petty differences (star wars). It's got take away value and I've tried the colour-coded gender questionnaire on all of my friends. It's the kind of self-help book that really does want you to help yourself and never suffers from the 'so what' factor'. Throroughly recommend it
on 24 March 2006
I ordered this great helpful book last year and Dr.Gary Wood as a social psychologist who specializes in relationships,and has a lot of research studies and experience to debunk all of the common harmful limiting gender myths and gender stereotypes that the Mars & Venus books written by John Gray (who got his "ph.D" from Columbia Pacific University,a mail order diploma mill that was closed down by the California Attorney General's office in 2001 as a phony operation offering totally worthless degress!) re-enforces to millions of people. More people should know about and read this true sensible important helpful book!
on 18 January 2006
Deceptive little book that combines fun, poetry, quizzes, academic evidence. Very thought provoking and covers a whole range of topics in its journey to challenge gender stereotypes. Some passages of prose and the most beautiful I've ever read in self-help books, especially the 'Declaration of Inter-dependence'. Enormously optimistic and inspiring. A perfect anti-dote to the usual 'battle of the sexes' stuff. A must read.
on 19 April 2008
Having got the author's excellent 'Don't Wait For Your Ship To Come In. . .Swim Out To Meet It', suitably impressed, I was intrigued by this, now quite rare, book. Quite simply, it is a breathtaking tour of gender myths. It focuses on our profound similarites rather than surface differences and offers a model of relationships based on cooperation rather than competition. Dr Gary Wood's parody of the Mars and venus mythology is hilarious and exposes the nonsense of the 'different planet' approach. Hopefully it won't be too long before this is back in print.
on 15 April 2008
Really busts all of the gender myths that endlessly do the rounds. Discovered this after reading the author's personal development book 'Don't Wait For Your Ship To Come In. . Swim Out To Meet It!'. Both are great read and really say something that other books miss. Although I've only skimmed so far, Sex, Lies and Stereotypes covers a staggering amount of ground in a small space. I skipped to the chapter 'Warning: Gender Stereotypes are bad for our health'. Fascinating stuff. I get the feeling that the book can be read on a number of levels which unfold after repeated readings.