Child’s play

“Girl toys drive women away from science”

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“We need to change the way we think about boys and girls and what’s appropriate for them from a very early age. Does the choice of toys matter? I believe it does,” says Dame Athene Donald, a leading professor in experimental physics at Cambridge University, and incoming president of the British Science Association (BSA). Donald’s own field of science — physics — is notoriously male-dominated and she would love to change that. In her inaugural address to the BSA next week, she will argue that “girl toys” generally lead to passivity, instead of encouraging real creative skills.“If they have never had the opportunity to take things to pieces and build them up again; if they have always just played with dolls and dolls in a stereotypically female situation, such as worrying about hairstyle or making tea, then how can they imagine themselves as engineers or chemists?” Donald is due to say in her Thursday address.

Read the full story at The Guardian.

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