Tuesday, February 20, 2007
At The Little Professor (one of my favorite academic blogs), I found a post about this site, which analyzes a person's writing in order to determine their gender.

I pasted in the following excerpt from the third chapter of my dissertation:

As Archibald Pitcairne traveled to Leiden, he made the acquaintance of a fellow Scot, Charles Oliphant, who had recently departed Leiden to return home. Whether they knew one another prior to this meeting we do not know, but they struck some sort of affinity with one another, for when Pitcairne returned to Edinburgh and the debate over the process of examination ensued, Oliphant supported Pitcairne. By the end of the decade, however, the two had become bitter enemies. In this chapter, we shall take a closer look at the ‘riot in ye colledge’ (as the tempestuous debate over examinations is commonly called) and at the events which followed. Rather than merely synthesizing the various accounts, however, I will again strive to put the events into the Dutch context. Seen in this light, Pitcairne’s actions will, as in the previous chapter, reveal more than historians have previously identified. Pitcairne indeed imported a Leiden model into Edinburgh medicine, but not the model that has heretofore been recognized.

From Pitcairne’s vantage point, everything that historians see as having been accomplished in 1726 (the formal founding of a medical school in Edinburgh with paid Professorships) had effectively already been done (just without the salaries!). The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh had been established to examine and license M.D.s in the town, and three “professorships” had been established in the town college (as the University was yet known). His activities in the 1690s, therefore, focused not on establishing something, but on improving what had been established already. Pitcairne set about this task of improvement by concentrating on three things: 1) modifying the examination procedure in the RCPE to more closely resemble the Leiden model, 2) asserting the primacy of the physicians over the surgeons, and 3) making adjustments to the teaching curriculum and medical facilities that would take into account his own new theories. As we examine all three of these areas, the Leiden model shall serve as the explanatory key.

In the Early Years of the Royall Colledge of Phisitians of Edinburgh, Robert Peel Ritchie recounted the events surrounding the riot in the college and W. S. Craig, in his History of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, visited them again without significant changes in the story.[1] The practice originally set up by the College in 1681 required that each aspiring physician be examined in three areas. The first exam focused on questions on the Institutes (or theory) of medicine. The second focused on questions taken from Hippocrates’s Aphorisms, where the examinee would have to expound on the selected aphorisms to the satisfaction of the examiners. The third part of the examination comprised the student responding to two practical cases presented to him by the examiners. In each portion of the exam, the College appointed two examiners on an ad hoc basis.

As we touched on in the previous chapter, the College later altered this practice and began appointing examiners on an annual basis instead. The minutes being absent for the period between 1685 and 1694, we do not know precisely when the change took place. Ritchie suspects that the change came late, and I see no reason to disagree. The events show that under (Pitcairne’s father-in-law) Archibald Stevensone’s leadership, the new form had been practiced. But after the college elected one Dr. Trotter as the new President, the rule returned to the old form.[2] At precisely this point, Pitcairne and Stevensone, along with Oliphant, and a few other younger of the Fellows broke ranks with the newly elected officials and attempted to hold their own College meetings with the “re-elected” Dr. Stevensone as the President. The entire affair is difficult to unravel, and the difficulty is only compounded by the absence of the minutes. We must, however, establish the salient points.

[1] Robert Peel Ritchie, The Early Days of the Royall Colledge of Phisitians, Edinburgh (Edinburgh: Johnston, 1899) and W.S. Craig, History of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publications, 1976).

[2] Ritchie, Early Days , 107-8, & 164-6.

Thankfully, the gender genie determined that I am a male.

Words: 628

Female Score: 542
Male Score: 975

The Gender Genie thinks the author of this passage is: male!

Feminine Keywords Masculine Keywords
[with] 5 x 52 = 260 [around] 0 x 42 = 0
[if] 0 x 47 = 0 [what] 1 x 35 = 35
[not] 4 x 27 = 108 [more] 2 x 34 = 68
[where] 1 x 18 = 18 [are] 0 x 28 = 0
[be] 1 x 17 = 17 [as] 10 x 23 = 230
[when] 2 x 17 = 34 [who] 1 x 19 = 19
[your] 0 x 17 = 0 [below] 0 x 8 = 0
[her] 0 x 9 = 0 [is] 3 x 8 = 24
[we] 6 x 8 = 48 [these] 1 x 8 = 8
[should] 0 x 7 = 0 [the] 73 x 7 = 511
[she] 0 x 6 = 0 [a] 5 x 6 = 30
[and] 14 x 4 = 56 [at] 3 x 6 = 18
[me] 0 x 4 = 0 [it] 0 x 6 = 0
[myself] 0 x 4 = 0 [many] 0 x 6 = 0
[hers] 0 x 3 = 0 [said] 0 x 5 = 0
[was] 1 x 1 = 1 [above] 0 x 4 = 0

[to] 16 x 2 = 32

On the other hand, I excerpted the following passage from this post at McCain's blog, and got some interesting results.

In my ongoing conversation with a friend about sanctification, we've come to another issue that is important in this discussion. My friend, again, in a well intentioned desire to speak faithfully about sanctification, has unfortunately set up another straw man. She has opined that "some Lutherans" regard sanctification as "synergistic" while other Lutherans view sanctification in terms of monergism because it is worked in us by God's grace alone by means of Word and Sacrament. Well, of course, no faithful Lutheran that I know of is running about suggesting, much less actually saying, that sanctification is "synergistic." I think where the confusion comes here is, again, a fundamental lack of knowledge of what our Confessions actually teach based on the Scriptures. Our conversation goes back to our discussion of how, or if, Lutherans in their preaching and teaching should spend time talking about the works we are set free in Christ to be doing. Her position is that time spent on talking about good works we can and should be doing is just less time talking about Christ. That's a false alternative though. Her view helps me understand why some Lutheran preaching these days is lacking in any conversation directed to the regenerate about their lives in Christ beyond saying to the regenerate, "You are sinful and fail to keep God's law and here is how you fail to keep it" instead of encouraging them to be what they have become in Christ by drawing them to the cruciform life as an expression of thanks and praise, calling them to continue on in the greatest epic journeys any human being is ever called to take, to take joy in the calling and station of life and to see the privilege of living under Christ in His kingdom and serving Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence and blessedness. Our Confessions wisely note that we need always to keep in mind that there is a difference between the unregenerate and the regenerate. Here is how I responded to her inquiry on this issues, and maybe you might find it interesting, perhaps helpful.

We must never give anyone the impression that conversion is God's work and sanctification is our work. Clearly, that is not true. But the Scriptures do speak of our life of good works as our cooperation with the Holy Spirit, made by possible through grace alone. The way to avoid false understandings is not to avoid talking about works, or saying that we should urge Christians to them, for fear of taking their eyes off Christ. The best way is simply to teach and keep these things clear and distinct. Here is what I told her.

"Susan, when you asked me previously to tell you if sanctification is "synergism" or "monergism" I answered by saying that if you insist on using the term "synergism" in the discussion, not helpful in my view, then one could say that Sanctification is "syneristically monergistic" or "monergistically synergistic."

Our Confessions teach very clearly that in fact Sanctification does involve our doing and willing, precisely because of God's doing and willing in us, because of Christ. In Sanctification we can and should speak this way, but in justification such talk is entirely excluded.

That's why I told you previously that it is not correct for you to say that when you read your Bible you should never say, "I'm going to try to do this in my life, by God's grace and blessing" but only to say, "I can't do this. I'm glad Jesus did." You are regenerated in Christ. In Christ, according to the new man, your will is now freed from sin and death and the power of Satan. You can say, "I will do this, in Christ." St. Paul was very bold to say, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." He said, "I can do..." There is nothing wrong in saying that, but it is always "in Christ." That's the point.Another problem in your comments which do not properly distinguish things is that you do not seem to recognize that conversion does change us. It is not the change in us that justifies us, but we are changed as a result of our regeneration.

Words: 717

Female Score: 853
Male Score: 847

The Gender Genie thinks the author of this passage is: female!

Feminine Keywords Masculine Keywords
[with] 2 x 52 = 104 [around] 0 x 42 = 0
[if] 3 x 47 = 141 [what] 3 x 35 = 105
[not] 8 x 27 = 216 [more] 0 x 34 = 0
[where] 1 x 18 = 18 [are] 4 x 28 = 112
[be] 3 x 17 = 51 [as] 4 x 23 = 92
[when] 2 x 17 = 34 [who] 1 x 19 = 19
[your] 3 x 17 = 51 [below] 0 x 8 = 0
[her] 4 x 9 = 36 [is] 27 x 8 = 216
[we] 8 x 8 = 64 [these] 2 x 8 = 16
[should] 5 x 7 = 35 [the] 22 x 7 = 154
[she] 1 x 6 = 6 [a] 6 x 6 = 36
[and] 21 x 4 = 84 [at] 0 x 6 = 0
[me] 3 x 4 = 12 [it] 6 x 6 = 36
[myself] 0 x 4 = 0 [many] 0 x 6 = 0
[hers] 0 x 3 = 0 [said] 1 x 5 = 5
[was] 1 x 1 = 1 [above] 0 x 4 = 0
[to] 28 x 2 = 56

Luckily for McCain, the Gender Genie was also wrong about the Little Professor, so I am led to believe that whatever algorithm the Gender Genie uses has some flaws. Otherwise we might have had to conclude that the LCMS had already begun ordaining women. Egad!

I noticed something, however, about the algorithm which I think does reflect differences in male and female speech patterns: the different forms of the verb "to be". The forms most often employed in passive constructions ("be" and "was") are considered female speech, while the more active forms ("is" and "are") are male. Interesting. Of course, we all know that the word "the" is part of male speech!(?!) It has a "y" chromosome after all...right?
posted by Kepler at 09:26 |


At 2/20/2007 06:55:00 PM, Blogger solarblogger

I'm discovering all sorts of things using this Gender Genie. The section in the Westminster Confession on the Sabbath was written by a woman. I knew it! I knew it! Camille Paglia is a man. No wonder I think she's so sensible.

My favorite discover is that the section on the Fourth Commandment in the Large Catechism was written by Katie Luther.


At 2/20/2007 07:42:00 PM, Blogger Kepler

It appears Coleridge was a woman about half the time; as was Wordsworth. I blame Dorothy.

I pasted in Hemingway's A Clean Well Lighted Place; he's a man!


At 4/03/2007 02:35:00 PM, Blogger Melethiel

An analysis of my term paper on Bach revealed that I am male. :o


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