In The Female Brain, UCSF's Brizendine Describes How Women See the World

Louann Brizendine, MD, neuropsychiatrist and director of the UCSF Women's and Teen Girls' Mood and Hormone Clinic, will publish her first book, The Female Brain, on August 1. She calls the book an "owner's manual" for women, showing how the female brain sees the world differently and reacts differently than the male brain in every stage of life from newborn to old age.

The book draws on her own work on hormones and emotions, as well as the past decade of discoveries in neuropsychology, neuroendocrinology and neuroscience.
Louann Brizendine

Research shows that most aspects of male and female brains are similar, Brizendine says. IQs average the same, and both sexes are capable of excellence at physical, artistic and intellectual pursuits. There also are fascinating differences. In problem-solving tests, women and men may come to the same answer, although brain scans show that they use different brain circuitry to find the solution. Women tend to have faster and better fine-motor skills than men, as well as faster and broader verbal skills. Women have more neurons in the part of the brain devoted to emotions and to detecting emotions in others. In a complex situation, Brizendine says, a woman is likely to understand the overall situation better than a man, while paying attention to the emotional content and the emotional effects of the circumstances. In a profile of Brizendine and her book, Newsweek reported objections from sociologists and doctors who are concerned that a discussion of brain differences could be used to undercut women and reinforce old gender stereotypes. Brizendine says that understanding women's and men's brains could have the opposite effect. "Brain differences do identify different strengths for women and men," she says. "Delineating these differences can enable women and men to take advantage of their strengths and understand their differences." Links: "A Brain of One's Own"
Washington Post, August 20, 2006 "Lobal Warfare"
The Sunday Times (London), August 9, 2006 "The Science of 'The Female Brain'"
Good Morning America (ABC News), August 7, 2006
(note: a 15-second advertisement will play before the 5:21 segment featuring Brizendine) Excerpt: The Female Brain
Good Morning America (ABC News), August 7, 2006
A chapter of Brizendine's book has been made available online. "Why girls will always be girls"
Toronto Star, August 6, 2006 "Women's brains are different: San Francisco neuropsychiatrist says differences between women's and men's brains are very real, and the sooner we understand it, the better"
San Francisco Chronicle, August 6, 2006 "Understanding the female brain,"
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 1, 2006 "Baby Brain and Mommy Brain - A Dynamic Pas de Deux"
Bay Area Business Woman, August 2006, Vol. 13, No. 11 "Why Girls Will Be Girls"
Newsweek, July 31, 2006
Also includes Newsweek on Air audio interview with Brizendine UCTV Lectures: "The Teen Girl Brain: Insights Into What Makes Us Women"
March 22, 2006

Coming up:
(pending last-minute changes)

ABC's 20/20 has scheduled a story titled "Gender Brain" for September 29, featuring Brizendine and her insights. The story is expected to include the birth of twins at UCSF's Center for Mothers and Newborns - one girl and one boy.

"The Female Brain or What Makes us Women": The Center for Gender Equity will host Brizendine from noon to 1 p.m. on November 7, 2006 for an interactive discussion and book-signing. The interactive session will include discussion of women's unique brain-body-behavior.