Amanda Marcotte on slate.com (Feb 22, 2013)
It’s the reason some stand-up comedians exist. It’s been the premise on which plenty of films have been made. Personally, I’ve been told several times that I talk too much. In this piece, Amanda argues that the general belief that women on an average speak more than men could be an unfounded myth, after all.
So why do people so readily believe women talk more? Part of the problem is that our prejudices distort our observations about reality. Consider that most Americans overestimate how much of the population is gay by a factor of 5 and overestimate how much of the population has illegally immigrated here by a factor of 6 or 7. They also overestimate what percentage of the population is on welfare. Traditional gender roles demand that women should be the listeners and not the speakers, so a woman who speaks as much as a man comes across as talking “too much.”