## “Female Mathematician”

Just out of curiosity I googled two phrases: “male mathematician” and “female mathematician”. The results for these phrases on May 3, 2009 were:

- male mathematician — 824
- female mathematician — 5,680

Why do you think that female mathematicians are more popular than male mathematicians? I think it is because when people hear the word mathematician, by default they picture a man, so the phrase “male mathematician” is perceived as pleonastic.

I decided to look at some of the 824 sites talking about “male mathematicians”. Many web-pages containing the words “male mathematician” are actually pages about female mathematicians, where there is a need to mention a mathematician of the opposite sex. Many other sites are dating pages where a mathematician looks for a partner, and it is wise to start with a description of the sex of the seeker.

Speaking of dating, did I ever mention that I am a female mathematician who was married three times, and all of my spouses were male mathematicians?

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## Susan:

Interesting….don’t marry a mathematician. I did the first time. Marry outside the field.

22 May 2009, 5:54 am## West Karana » Daily Blogroll 5/22 — On Holiday edition:

[…] wins today’s award for “The Best Use of Pleonastic in a Blog Post“. Grats, […]

22 May 2009, 8:20 am## irene:

Tan’ka, who puts more dating stuff: male or female mathematicians? I remember, that many years ago in Moscow we avoided unpleasant men in the streets by telling them that we are from math department. Worked all the time…

22 May 2009, 7:36 pm## misha:

A similar result: “female soldier” got roughly 236 thousand hits, while “male soldier” got only about 25 thousand.

23 May 2009, 11:41 pmFor doctors it is better: 9/2, for teachers 5/2 (go figure), for nurses 1/3, for robbers 3/1, 36/17 for murderers, 32/12 for cooks, 8/3 for lumberjacks, and look at this, here is something to be proud of: 20/1 for swindlers!

## misha:

The most sex-balamced profession so far: a porn star (5/4).

23 May 2009, 11:46 pm## misha:

Now, the librarians can be really proud: 653/665.

24 May 2009, 12:02 am## princesa:

Machismo in mathematics is obvious, for that reason to know female mathematician is interesting. I liked very much this comment. Due to that it shows clearly that female mathematician are more interesting than male mathematician, since male mathematician are more common than female mathematician. Therefore, my attention was present in the following: “Many web-pages containing the words “male mathematician” are actually pages about female mathematicians, where there is a need to mention a mathematician of the opposite sex” we can see how math is masculinized in schools, the mathematics exercices are made for men and that is not a motivation for women.

29 July 2010, 1:55 am