endocrinologist Paul Pearsall ( 1987) believes that the more brain-lateralized male tends to be more "self-oriented," while the more integrated female brain tends to be more "other" and "us oriented." He goes on to write that the "whole brain orientation is more in tune with the principles of healthy living in our world and for our world" ( 1987:33). 7 From a sociological point of view, Miller ( 1984:1) sees male development of self as entailing a process of separating, of becoming "one's own man," and the female process as more "encompassing," and "closer to the elementary necessities from which our dominant culture has become unnecessarily removed" ( 1984:5). Whether we work from a biological or a sociological position, we arrive at the same conclusion: Females are generally more affiliative, nurturing, empathetic, and altruistic than males; and males are generally more prone to anger, dominance, and aggression. The qualifier "generally" emphasizes that we are talking about trait distributions with mean values differing by sex but which also contain significant overlap, more so on some traits than on others. I do not wish to create caricatures of "Man, the beastly destroyer" and "Woman, the loving creator." There are certainly many sensitive, caring, and pacifist men and many insensitive, uncaring, and aggressive women.
As emphasized in previous chapters, human beings and their social organizations are not determined by biological fiat. We saw that genes are units of potential that are differentially expressed or repressed in different environments and that our brains are, in a very real sense, "programmed" by our environments and how we react to them (although our genes bias our reactions in one direction or the other). It is not farfetched to say, then, that our genes and brains are in some meaningful sense environmentally "determined." If this is true of genes and brains, it is even more true of the physiological foundations of emotional behavior. Emotional expression is a function of environmental events, our expectations related to those events derived from experiencing similar events, and the neurohormonal propensities individuals bring with them to the situation. Although I have emphasized the reductionist side of the hormone-environment relationship, perhaps in no other area is the biological and social mix more intertwined than in the area of emotion.