Kasparov on Women chess players

Redlynx17

C.N. 1916 quoted some of Garry Kasparov’s replies in an interview published on pages 61-73 of Playboy, November 1989. They included the following on page 70, in response to the question, ‘How about women chess players?’

‘Well, in the past, I have said that there is real chess and women’s chess. Some people don’t like to hear this, but chess does not fit women properly. It’s a fight, you know? A big fight. It’s not for women. Sorry. She’s helpless if she has men’s opposition. I think this is very simple logic. It’s the logic of a fighter, a professional fighter. Women are weaker fighters.

There is also the aspect of creativity in chess. You have to create new ideas. That’s quite difficult, too. Chess is the combination of sport, art and science. In all these fields, you can see men’s superiority. Just compare the sexes in literature, in music or in art. The result is, you know, obvious. Probably the answer is in the genes.’

The interviewer then said: ‘Do you realize that you’re expressing a sexist point of view, and that Western women will be enraged by it?’ Kasparov replied:

‘Yes, but I’m not concerned. I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

 

Basically Kasparov reinforcing what Fischer said. Although he did back track some things later. Interesting stuff.

MikeCrockett

Amazing what trouble gets generated simply because someone quotes a man about what his opinions are about women. Given it's cited as a quote from 1989 and printed in playboy no less, you would think this is an obvious set up for sexist controversy.

kindaspongey
Redlynx17 wrote:

 ... Basically Kasparov reinforcing what Fischer said. Although he did back track some things later. Interesting stuff.

Cathy Forbes in 1992: "Why, in your opinion do women generally not play chess as well as men?"

Fischer: "Well, it seems to be nature, but perhaps with time they are improving, and I assume that they will continue to improve."

Redlynx17
kindaspongey wrote:
Redlynx17 wrote:

 ... Basically Kasparov reinforcing what Fischer said. Although he did back track some things later. Interesting stuff.

Cathy Forbes in 1992: "Why, in your opinion do women generally not play chess as well as men?"

Fischer: "Well, it seems to be nature, but perhaps with time they are improving, and I assume that they will continue to improve."

 

"It seems to be nature". Don't think it requires explanation . Besides its 1992. I think the highest rated women during Fischer's time was 2000-2100.

Fischer had this to say about Lisa Lane when it was related to him that she considered Fischer "probably the greatest chess player alive":


"That statement is accurate, but Lisa Lane really wouldn't be in a position to know. They're all weak, all women. They're stupid compared to men. They shouldn't play chess, you know. They're like beginners. They lose every single game against a man. There isn't a woman player in the world I can't give knight-odds to and still beat."

Fischer - 1961

 

They can't concentrate, they don't have stamina, and they aren't creative. They are all fish.

- Fischer on women chess players, 1961

 

There is another quote I can't find atm. He basically said: I could pick a random guy, coach him and he would rek any woman chess player in the world.

kimberly47

I am not sure if it is fair to judge men based on statements made during the dark ages of gender science.

People in the past used to think that women's brains were different than men's brains giving them different skill sets; that females were generally better at certain types of thinking than men and vice versa.

We now know that was false.

 

flumculus

I think he changed his views after loosing to Judith Polgar no?

oregonpatzer

Men are like pigs on two legs, and I have my own piggish moments which are fortunately not memorialized for all time in the press.  The ghost of Queen Boudicca looks askance at the former world champ.  Her sister was raped by the Romans, so she entered battle against their legions (naked and painted blue, so the story goes) and she defeated them.  Military history is full of triumphant female generals from Princess Olga to Joan of Arc, and Kasparov would quail in their presence. 

Gil-Gandel
oregonpatzer wrote:

Men are like pigs on two legs, and I have my own piggish moments which are fortunately not memorialized for all time in the press.  The ghost of Queen Boudicca looks askance at the former world champ.  Her sister was raped by the Romans, so she entered battle against their legions (naked and painted blue, so the story goes) and she defeated them.  Military history is full of triumphant female generals from Princess Olga to Joan of Arc, and Kasparov would quail in their presence. 

Boudicca caught the 9th Legion in the open with odds of about 20 - 1 on her side. Then she massacred a lot of non-combatants before foolishly engaging Suetonius Paulinus at Watling Street where, still with a huge advantage in numbers (maybe still 20 - 1 after earlier success had attracted more allies), she had to take on two legions at once and got maybe 80,000 of her followers wiped out for a few hundred Romans. Not what you'd call a role model. (Also, not her sister. Little research maybe?)

As for Kasparov: feh, what does he know about chess?

Enjoy your male guilt and self-flagellation but I respectfully decline to share it.

sbooder

I have just come back to chess and I am playing some unrated games to get me back on my feet.  The person I am playing is a woman and she has beaten me twice...from two games and I am sure she will beat me in all our games for a while.  Then I may win one or two, but I am sure it will be just who plays better on the day.

What I'm trying to say is this. All this rubbish has been spoken about women in every field...Just ask Marie Curie? If Kasparov is not able to separate a game (chess) from real life, that is his problem.

 

kimberly47
flumculus wrote:

I think he changed his views after loosing to Judith Polgar no?

 

He called her a lose woman.

oregonpatzer

Thank you for your contribution, @Gil-Gandel, even though I don't agree with it.  Rome was the most powerful entity in the world at its time; your country, the Anglians, were minding their own business on their little island (long before they stretched out their hands and became for a time the most powerful entity in the world, just as my country is now), and they raised up a great queen to defeat their adversary (one of the only two great queens in history, the other being Elizabeth I) and yes, Boudicca IS a role model for what to do in a hostile, volatile situation, and no, I am not a self-flagellating male weenie, but I don't really care what you think about me.   

crisy

Headline! Headline! Really good chess player has silly opinions! 

Is it really newsworthy?

imsighked2
Redlynx17 wrote:

C.N. 1916 quoted some of Garry Kasparov’s replies in an interview published on pages 61-73 of Playboy, November 1989. They included the following on page 70, in response to the question, ‘How about women chess players?’

‘Well, in the past, I have said that there is real chess and women’s chess. Some people don’t like to hear this, but chess does not fit women properly. It’s a fight, you know? A big fight. It’s not for women. Sorry. She’s helpless if she has men’s opposition. I think this is very simple logic. It’s the logic of a fighter, a professional fighter. Women are weaker fighters.

There is also the aspect of creativity in chess. You have to create new ideas. That’s quite difficult, too. Chess is the combination of sport, art and science. In all these fields, you can see men’s superiority. Just compare the sexes in literature, in music or in art. The result is, you know, obvious. Probably the answer is in the genes.’

The interviewer then said: ‘Do you realize that you’re expressing a sexist point of view, and that Western women will be enraged by it?’ Kasparov replied:

‘Yes, but I’m not concerned. I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

 

Basically Kasparov reinforcing what Fischer said. Although he did back track some things later. Interesting stuff.

Only really insecure men feel the need to bash women, usually to make up for their own feelings of inadequacy. Interesting that the interview you post is from 1989, almost 20 years ago. I'm not surprised you quoted "Playboy," which objectifies women.

imsighked2

Judit Polgar defeating Gary Kasparov:

https://www.chess.com/clubs/forum/view/judit-polgar-vs-garry-kasparov

NeilBerm

I thought Kasparov's views on women in chess changed somewhat over time?

Pulpofeira
Gil-Gandel escribió:
oregonpatzer wrote:

Men are like pigs on two legs, and I have my own piggish moments which are fortunately not memorialized for all time in the press.  The ghost of Queen Boudicca looks askance at the former world champ.  Her sister was raped by the Romans, so she entered battle against their legions (naked and painted blue, so the story goes) and she defeated them.  Military history is full of triumphant female generals from Princess Olga to Joan of Arc, and Kasparov would quail in their presence. 

Boudicca caught the 9th Legion in the open with odds of about 20 - 1 on her side. Then she massacred a lot of non-combatants before foolishly engaging Suetonius Paulinus at Watling Street where, still with a huge advantage in numbers (maybe still 20 - 1 after earlier success had attracted more allies), she had to take on two legions at once and got maybe 80,000 of her followers wiped out for a few hundred Romans. Not what you'd call a role model. (Also, not her sister. Little research maybe?)

As for Kasparov: feh, what does he know about chess?

Enjoy your male guilt and self-flagellation but I respectfully decline to share it.

One or two things, indeed. But he's also pontificating about several other topics there.

lfPatriotGames
Redlynx17 wrote:

C.N. 1916 quoted some of Garry Kasparov’s replies in an interview published on pages 61-73 of Playboy, November 1989. They included the following on page 70, in response to the question, ‘How about women chess players?’

‘Well, in the past, I have said that there is real chess and women’s chess. Some people don’t like to hear this, but chess does not fit women properly. It’s a fight, you know? A big fight. It’s not for women. Sorry. She’s helpless if she has men’s opposition. I think this is very simple logic. It’s the logic of a fighter, a professional fighter. Women are weaker fighters.

There is also the aspect of creativity in chess. You have to create new ideas. That’s quite difficult, too. Chess is the combination of sport, art and science. In all these fields, you can see men’s superiority. Just compare the sexes in literature, in music or in art. The result is, you know, obvious. Probably the answer is in the genes.’

The interviewer then said: ‘Do you realize that you’re expressing a sexist point of view, and that Western women will be enraged by it?’ Kasparov replied:

‘Yes, but I’m not concerned. I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

 

Basically Kasparov reinforcing what Fischer said. Although he did back track some things later. Interesting stuff.

I have to disagree with almost everything he said. Maybe he said it because he was younger and didn't know better. If he thought chess is a "big fight" that leads me to believe he has never actually fought for anything. Chess is not a sport, baseball is a sport. Chess is not art, there is nothing being copyrighted or signed as a unique creation. Chess is not science, there are no plants or animals or minerals being discovered or studied. Chess is just a game, which some people happen to be good at.

SeniorPatzer

Kasparov:  "I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

Very reasonable.   Only an unreasonable person would disagree.

nicksonbennio
SeniorPatzer wrote:

Kasparov:  "I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

Very reasonable.   Only an unreasonable person would disagree.

 

Not unreasonable to disagree in the context of his asserting this in relation to chess. The idea that women can't handle the logical stresses of the game is an antiquated one based on the misunderstanding that women pursuing different pursuits to men is something other than the result of social pressures. Tell Maryam Mirzakhani or Marie Curie that they couldn't handle logical thinking because they were women - both people who achieved more in logical fields than Kasparov did, for the record.

NeilBerm
SeniorPatzer wrote:

Kasparov:  "I’m sure that women can do many things better than men in many fields. I think it’s wrong to want to be compared all the time, to want to be equal in everything. Men and women are different.’

 

Very reasonable.   Only an unreasonable person would disagree.

I agree there should be some differences due to biology, but they are not that significant in mental activities. Especially in regards to things like personality the manner in which someone is raised plays a much larger role than biology. There are slight differences I am familiar with in areas such as visual memory and emotional intelligence but with all the different skills required for chess I don't really think that could be a credible explanation.