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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

What's in a name? People fear "male" hurricanes more

What's in a name? People fear "male" hurricanes more

Sexism is alive and well. Don’t believe it? Look at hurricanes. That’s right — hurricanes. Behaviorial researchers at the University of Illinois in Champaign have found that people take hurricanes more seriously when they have male names, as opposed to female. And one serious consequence, they also found, is that hurricanes with female names have a higher body count — simply because people are less likely to evacuate or batten down. They found that sexism wasn’t limited to male subjects. Men and women both considered “female” storms less scary and are also “likely to believe that women are milder and less aggressive.” Tell...

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