Yesterday I was at Subcity and I overheard two employees (man and women) discussing why women were more emotional than men. They both seemed to agree that women did show more emotions than men, but they had different view points. The male thought it was due to biological differences in that men and women had different hormones which caused different levels of emotions. The women employee felt it was more environmental as she said "women are more emotional because they can be," most likely implying that society accepts emotional behaviors in women more than in men. I feel that both biology and the environment both contribute to the differences in emotions.
I found a website that talks about why women are more emotional, and it appears that both the environment and hormones can both be held responsible. The article says that women become more emotional starting in puberty when their body begins to produce high levels of prolactin, a hormone present in tears and blood. It also mentions that men and women's tear ducts are shaped differently, which could be either the cause of the effect of more crying.
This artcile dicusses how women are more physiologically prone to stress. The evidence for this is that in males the amygdala communicates with organs that process visual stimulus while women's amygdala communicates more with hormones and digestion. Also women's bodies produce more stress hormones than do men's, explaining why women are exposed to stressful events they tend to stay more worked up about the event for a longer time than do men.
I always thought that women were more emotional, but I never knew why. I thought the stuff about women having different shaped tear ducts and having a somewhat different function for the amygdala were pretty interesting. Did any of this surprise you? Do you think these differences alone cause differences in emotions? What about the environment; did the environment cause these changes over time, or did the changes come first, and society adapted to the differences?