What is the ‘girl on the moon’? You can’t ask women without knowing them
When a young woman asks her boyfriend, “How do you know if I’m a girl?”, his response is “I don’t know, but I can tell by looking at you!”
We all know the type of men who think they know the answers to these questions, but few actually do.
Now, thanks to a team of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, we have the first in-depth look at how we think, feel, and act towards men.
“What we found is that men, whether they are girls or boys, respond to a girl’s physical features in a similar way to women,” says lead author and postdoctoral researcher Tanya A. Nesvig, PhD. “In this study, we asked men to tell us what they would say to a young girl asking a question like, ‘What do you think is the biggest obstacle you’ve faced when trying to get a date?'”
“This was one of the first experiments that showed that boys think differently about girls than girls think about themselves,” says Nes, who is also a member of the Berkeley Department of Psychology.
“We also found that girls were more likely to identify with a boy’s self-worth, and more likely than boys to identify as masculine.
And when we asked them to describe how they would respond to other girls, boys reported more positive responses to the girl who was not the opposite gender.
These findings suggest that girls, who are in the majority of society, do respond to boys in a more positive way than boys do to girls.”
“It’s really interesting to think about how our brain works,” says co-author and PhD candidate Laura D. Williams, PhD, a Ph.
D. candidate in psychology.
“I think that boys are really good at identifying with the attributes of boys.
And girls, on the other hand, are really bad at identifying girls.
So boys are good at getting girls to like them.
But girls are really terrible at getting boys to like their gender.”
In the study, the researchers created a virtual reality game in which the participants were asked to take on the roles of the four characters of the film “The Girl on the Moon”, a sci-fi movie set on a space station.
The researchers created two versions of the game: a female version and a male version.
In the male version, the player’s character was portrayed as a girl, while the player and his avatar were dressed as men.
The male avatar would be shown in the room with the other female characters, while in the female version, it would be the female character’s character.
Participants were asked which gender they identified with in the game.
They were then shown a series of pictures of women.
They would then have to decide if they would like to meet the woman, and if so, how long they would be able to spend together.
Participants could either choose to say yes or no to each picture, and the picture would either be shown for one minute or the game would end.
When the game ended, the participant was asked how they felt about meeting the woman.
In this version, participants were shown a number of photos, including the female avatar and the male avatar.
Participants would then be asked to rate the woman’s attractiveness on a scale of 0 to 7.
Participants in the male and female versions were also shown a picture of the same woman, but the male was wearing a dress and the female was wearing an orange bikini.
“So the male had a dress on, and he was the female,” says Williams.
“They were both wearing a bikini, but they were in different colors.
The female avatar was wearing pink and the red bikini was purple.
The guy was wearing red and purple.”
In both versions, participants would have to choose whether they would meet the female or the male, and then their responses were shown in a video.
The results showed that participants in the same game would rate the female more highly than those in the other version.
“The way that the game worked is that the female is a person that you meet for a few minutes, and that’s when you have to answer the question,” says Dr. Nils.
“It was the same in both versions of ‘The Girl On The Moon.’
So what we were seeing was that the girl is seen as more of a person than the male.
And that’s really what we find is interesting, that we have this pattern of responses that girls have, but we don’t see the same pattern for boys.”
The findings were published online February 8 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
“When we asked people to answer these questions and the girls had different answers to them, they said that the male could look more masculine, the male would look more feminine, and it’s because they’re looking at these differences,” says Atsushi Matsumoto, PhD student in psychology at the University at Buffalo