Err, yes, this is well known

Eleanor Roosevelt once quipped that a woman is like a tea bag. You can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.

So the former first lady would most certainly have approved of a new study which suggests women, far from being the weaker sex, are much more likely to survive a life-threatening crisis.

Researchers at the University of Southern Denmark trawled through historic data looking at death rates for men and women who suffered famines and epidemics, or who were sold into slavery.

In virtually every case, they found that women survived their ordeals far longer, often outliving their male counterparts by years, even when conditions were equally dire.

Women are generally genetically stronger (XX, the Y being a pitiful little thing) and also physically in one important sense. Not quite, but about, endurance.

Female expected lifespan used to be about the same or perhaps lower than men. The truly vast numbers dying in childbirth and complications of. Once that was largely out of the way then females expected lifespan became longer than men. We thus know this result without this research.

30 comments on “Err, yes, this is well known

  1. “Eleanor Roosevelt once quipped that a woman is like a tea bag. You can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.”

    I prefer my women to be like my coffee.

    Ground up into a powder, put into a airtight bag and stored in the freezer.

  2. Surely there’s an explanation doesn’t involve genes. If you’re collecting slaves, you take the ones that will sell. Fit, strong men & comely girls. And if you’re buying female slaves you don’t put comely girls to hewing rock.
    Is there anything to suppose the life of a female slave was very much different from she would have had, had she not been enslaved?

  3. Come to think of it, probably better. There had, after all, been money paid for them. They had value. Back home, particularly as the population’s going to include the munters, they’d have had less value & been treated like draught animals.

  4. By the way, Tim. You are an economist not a geneticist. Wouldn’t you do better to stick to your speciality?

  5. Eleanor Roosevelt once quipped that a woman is like a tea bag. You can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.

    It was good enough for Matthew Hopkins, and it’s good enough for me.

  6. Is there anything to suppose the life of a female slave was very much different from she would have had, had she not been enslaved?

    Shh. Don’t tell em, Spain!

  7. Talking of genetics, I was once told that what a Flanders farmer looks for in a wife is a woman, if the horse is ill, he can put her in the traces to pull the plough. Carrying the horse. Having seen a selection at Ypres market, they’ve certainly been breeding for them

  8. This seems highly unlikely. Worst case is the men killing and eating the women. Their survival depends on men showing restraint.

  9. The “in virtually every case” is doing a lot of work there. It means that in some cases this wasn’t true. Which means that as others have said, it’s not just genetics at play here. We could speculate that in some cultures men might sacrifice themselves to protect their women in certain circumstances for instance. Apropos of a recent discussion here it’s also true that women need fewer calories to maintain weight, all other things being equal, that could be a factor. Looks like another case of the bleeding obvious school of research.

  10. ‘new study which suggests women, far from being the weaker sex’

    More from the pretend world of feminism.

    ‘You can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.’

    Cute. But may I suggest you have a problem if you are getting your wisdom from Eleanor Roosevelt.

  11. ” women, far from being the weaker sex, are much more likely to survive a life-threatening crisis.”

    Most likely because lots of men get killed saving them.

  12. Physiology prof at medical school used to say “Men are designed for short, brutal lives, women are designed for long miserable ones”

  13. Ever noticed how women who keep going on about how strong they are tend to be the most fragile of basketcases?

    No wonder Margaret Thatcher wanted nothing to do with feminism.

  14. I just wish little old lady next door with her life-threatening crisis that happens every other day would have the decency to suffer with it more quietly, cos I don’t want to hear about what Dr Bodgan says about every ailment of her tortured life.

    Cos you will live 5 years longer than me and at the moment I can’t bend down for 3 hours during a heatwave weeding the garden like you. and i’m 30 years younger.

    I have seen her bent double going beserk with a spade for hours and hours during the summer and had to put with the saga of good nights and bad nights sleep tales cos of her knee.

  15. Could see there being an evolutionary argument for it, as women are more important than men when it comes to repopulating, so an advantage if more survive, while you only need one man…

    Does this mean men will be given priority treatment in the event of a flu epidemic as they’re clearly in more need.

    Reminded of ‘Day Of The Triffids’ where blind male survivors were pushed out of groups because they were a waste of resources, and blind women kept because they could reproduce.

  16. There’s a very obvious reason why the women often outlived the men in ancient times…

    Genesis 34:25-29
    Numbers 31:17-18
    Deuteronomy 20:13-14
    Deuteronomy 21:10-13
    Judges 21:11-12, 20-21
    etc.

  17. Women definitely talk about how they’re suffering more than men do. I guess if they talk about it more, they must be suffering more.

    And I can’t think of anyone more deserving than old Eleanor of being dropped into a big tank of hot water at least 30 feet deep with very high, slippery sides. If I had a time machine and could travel back to 1933, I’d definitely make it a priority to make that happen.

  18. @ DtP
    Mebbe – my observations suggest that we have, on average, a higher paid threshhold as a result of genetic selection (men with higher paid threshholds survived longer to priduce more offspring during the millennia prior to the introduction of firearms and, to a lesser extent in mining and industrial areas until 1914).

  19. @ john77
    I *meant* higher pain threshhold albeit higher paid men did tend to survive longer to produce more surviving offspring

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