WOMAN DOCTOR OR JUST DOCTOR?

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There was a serious car accident with father and son in one vehicle. Dad was pronounced dead by the paramedics, son was rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery.
The surgeon looked down at the boy, in shock, and shouted – that’s my son.
Who is the surgeon?

During a graduate class at Florida Atlantic University the professor posed this puzzle. It got me going for a moment. Dad was dead yet the surgeon said, “My son.” It did not immediately come to mind that the surgeon was the injured child’s mother.

In that period of time, one would reasonably expect everyone to use the distinguishing term,woman surgeon. Suchwere the paradigms back in the day. Certain occupations were gender assigned and exceptions required a designation, even the polar opposite classificationmale nurse.

I found an extreme example for us to explore for a moment. Still standing in a South…

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