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Susan Howell

Dr. Susan Howell teaches psychology at Campbellsville University, with her primary teaching interests being gender, development, and the integration of psychology and faith. In addition to teaching, Susan loves writing and presenting research findings at conferences, in class, and to anyone who will stand still long enough to listen.

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Power and the Brain

As an egalitarian I often write and speak on the importance of equality within male-female relationships. I do so because I strongly believe that power inequity prevents each partner from being all God calls him or her to be. Inequality diminishes everyone: those with power and those without. I hadn’t realized until recently, however, that […]

Right Answers, Wrong Questions

One reason that questions about men and women continue to confound us, I’m convinced, is that we’re asking the wrong questions, which tend to lead us to inadequate answers. So in an effort to un-confound things, I offer the following tweaked questions (TQ) so we can move toward answers that are more effective in addressing […]

Advantages and Disadvantages

One of my first objectives in teaching a Gender Studies course is to help my students realize that neither gender has all the advantages while the other is completely without perks. While most people have at least a vague awareness that males have it easier in many ways, women and men alike sometimes don’t consider […]


Who are you? Before you read any further, stop and write down about 5 words or phrases that describe who you are. Finished?    Read on! Social psychologists tell us that (in the United States, anyway) when asked for self-descriptors, men tend to select words or phrases that show their independence from others, for instance […]

Can Girls Be Smart and Popular?

When teaching a college gender studies course, students are often surprised to learn of what researcher L. A. Bell calls the “smart versus social” dilemma, meaning that as early as elementary school, girls seem to feel that they have to choose between being smart and having relationships. Laura Roberts & Anne Petersen of Lafayette College also […]

The Wizard of Oz: A Counter-Cultural Tale

When our daughter and son were born, my husband and I tried to encourage gender equality through the books and TV programs to which they were exposed.  While it was difficult at times, I was stunned when I realized that The Wizard of Oz runs counter to all of the gendered expectations other children’s stories […]

I Have Confidence! (I Think)

“I don’t want to drive late at night in this storm,” she states. “I’ll wait until morning when it clears up.” “I’ll drive. It’s no problem,” he says. So what just happened here? Was she lacking in confidence? Or does he have a little too much? People who study gendered behavior report that in situations […]