sevenhelz: photo of me snuggling a cat. my face is not shown (Default)
posted by [personal profile] sevenhelz at 01:34am on 12/12/2009 under
I've enjoyed reading this comment thread :) I particularly liked/related to what carovee had to say way back up-thread, and DesertRose: "Feminism has made me less apologetic for my intelligence" :)

Hey, MaryFlashlight: "Yeah, I WAS that girl that everyone else hated." Good for you! (except maybe people's reactions, but in principle anyway!) I think when I got to high school (aged 10/11 here, don't know if it's the same) there was a prejudice there that smart/geeky people couldn't be good at sport, which very few people got over - I was put off physical fitness for years, and if I had regrets, that would be one.

I like to think of intelligence in terms of how quickly people learn, and often simply how fast a thread of conversation they can follow - or how many topics they can hold onto at once. It's not the only way of being smart, but it's the kind that makes people easiest for me personally to talk to. I've always known I was smart; feminism has helped me trust my own judgement in things, and to argue effectively (partly by giving me a vocabulary).
As regards social intelligence, I know I had to learn a lot of social rules in a systematic way, and I cunningly used my formal education to do so, studying English Language and Drama and Theatre Studies as well as Music; all forms of communication. I worry that, growing up, my brothers didn't do what I did, which was to spot that I needed these things; then again, they were a great influence on me in that I never tried to compete with their maths smarts, and despite my secret shame at the time, I'm now glad of that. It was never my passion.

Now that I think about it, one of the things I enjoy about socialising with people who've never done the academic thing, and don't consider themselves bright in that way, is that there is very little of that overbearing you-must-prove-yourself attitude that so often (especially as I grew up) comes from white guys who think they're smart (and, granted, often are, though not necessarily smarter than anyone else in the room).

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