Tuesday, August 09, 2005

We've Got Our Excuse Now, Guys

LONDON (AFP) Men who are accused of never listening by women now have an excuse -- women's voices are more difficult for men to listen to than other men's, a report said.

The Daily Mail, quoting findings published in the specialist magazine NeuroImage, said researchers at Sheffield university in northern England discovered startling differences in the way the brain responds to male and female sounds.

Men deciphered female voices using the auditory part of the brain that processes music, while male voices engaged a simpler mechanism, it said.

The Mail quoted researcher Michael Hunter as saying, "The female voice is actually more complex than the male voice, due to differences in the size and shape of the vocal cords and larynx between men and women, and also due to women having greater natural 'melody' in their voices. This causes a more complex range of sound frequencies than in a male voice."

The findings may help explain why people suffering hallucinations usually hear male voices, the report added, as the brain may find it much harder to conjure up a false female voice accurately than a false male voice.

6 comments:

nightfly said...

In other news, Vincent Van Gogh has finally been reuinited with his missing ear.

Nettie said...

Muley...hey, Muley! MULEY! Are you listening to me???

Katalina B said...

HA!

Laura said...

But but but . . . children spend their early lives tuned in to female voices. Wouldn't all that practice count for something? Maybe it kicks in at puberty--

So in my classroom, I should be as unmelodic as possible, keep my tone deep, and speak slowly--and maybe the boys will listen up. Then I'd just have to deal with the girls . . .

Muley said...

I don't know about being unmelodic and slow in speech -- if you want to reach us guys, just make a lot of loud noises, like car crashes or machine gun blasts. That's why we like those violent video games so much.

And if that doesn't work, just hit us over the head with a heavy object, such as a frying pan. That usually gets our attention.

Did you say something, Nettie and Katalina?

Katalina B said...

HA!