Critique of “with No Boys to Ogle, We Had Time to Learn” by Christine Flowers

Topics: Education, Gender, Bryn Mawr College Pages: 3 (879 words) Published: October 9, 2011
A Critique of “With No Boys to Ogle, We Had Time to Learn” by Christine Flowers

Schools are divided into two categories around the world as we know: single-sex or mixed schools. While mixed schools accept both males and females, single-sex schools accept students of a certain single sex only. Both coed and single-sex schools have pros and cons, which nobody can deny. Some studies, however, have shown that there is no particular benefit to single-sex education. The study of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) in 1998, for example, “found no evidence to support single-sex education as better than coed education.” (qtd. in Elizabeth). As a proponent of single-sex schools, and herself a student receiving a 16-year single-sex education, Christine Flowers, in her article “With No Boys to Ogle, We Had Time to Learn”, argues against the common stereotypes of single-sex education and aims to provide the readers with various benefits of attending single-sex institutions. Throughout the article, the main point she contends is that, in the absence of the opposite sex, students can focus more on academics. The author is somewhat right to say that people pay more attention to their studies in a single-sex educational environment, because in a single-sex school, people have fewer chances, if any, to date and socialize with the opposite sex; therefore, they might have more spare time to spend on studying. However, the point Flowers makes is not necessarily true. People actually benefit more from attending a coed school than attending a single-sex school. Flowers clarifies the typical life of a student at a single-sex college through her personal experiences at Bryn Mawr College. She describes Bryn Mawr students as “brilliant, independent and focused” (Flowers 79). She then cites two examples of women whom she idolizes and describes as “two very independent dames” (Flowers 79): the Greek goddess of wisdom, Pallas Athena, and an alumna of Bryn Mawr, Katharine...
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