Cordelia Fine

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Cordelia Fine
Cordelia Fine.jpg
Born 1975 (age 40–41)
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Occupation Writer
Nationality British
Education Oxford University BA Hons Experimental Psychology, Cambridge University MPhil Criminology, University College London PhD Psychology (Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience)
Alma mater Oxford University
Cambridge University
University College London
Period 2006–present
Genre Psychology
Subject Neuroscience
Notable works A Mind of its Own, Delusions of Gender
Relatives Anne Fine, Kit Fine, Ione Fine

Cordelia Fine (born 1975 Toronto, Canada) is a Canadian-born British academic psychologist and writer. She is the author of two books on neuroscience and psychology, several book chapters and numerous academic publications. She wrote the introduction to The Britannica Guide to the Brain, is active as a journalist and wrote the column "Modern Mind" for newspaper The Australian.

Born in Toronto, Fine spent her childhood in the United States and Edinburgh.[1][2] Fine has a BA with first-class honours in experimental psychology from Oxford University (1995), M.Phil in criminology from Cambridge University (1996), and PhD in psychology from the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London (2001).[3]


Fine's first book, A Mind of Its Own, synthesizes a large amount of cognitive research to show that the mind often gives a distorted picture of reality. Her second book, Delusions of Gender, argues against the neuropsychological theory that men's and women's brains are intrinsically different by critically analysing hundreds of studies on the subject. "With still such different contexts and circumstances for men and women, it's simply not possible to compare the choices they make and draw confident conclusions about the sexes' different inner natures."[4] Fine's approach to gender has been criticised by those who think it behaviourist,[5][6] and for not accounting for what psychiatry terms gender identity disorders. However, as Fine pointed out in The Psychologist, the book is concerned with scientific evidence presented as support for the idea that males and females are, on average, 'hardwired' to 'systemise' versus 'empathise', rather than the question of the extent to which core gender identity is 'hardwired'; and that she does not subscribe to a behaviourist or social determinist view of development, but rather "one in which the developmental path is constructed, step by step, out of the continuous and dynamic interaction between brain, genes and environment."[7] Professor Ben Barres, a Professor of Neurobiology at Stanford University, wrote in a review of the book for PLOS Biology that Fine's "analysis of this data should be required reading for every neurobiology student, if not every human being."

Fine is an Associate Professor at Melbourne Business School, Australia, and a Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Psychological Sciences at the University of Melbourne, Australia.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Fine lives in Melbourne with her husband and two sons. She is the daughter of noted children's author Anne Fine and New York University Professor Kit Fine. Her sister is University of Washington Professor Ione Fine.[9][10]

Selected bibliography[edit]


Journal articles[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]


  1. ^ Freeman-Greene, Suzy (25 September 2010). "A brain strained by sexism". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  2. ^ "Eclectic voices line-up for consideration in John Llewellyn Rhys shortlist" (PDF). BookTrust. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  3. ^ "Cordelia Fine Academic Work". Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  4. ^ Irvine, Jessica (27 August 2011). "An equal footing still step too far". The Age (Melbourne). Retrieved 27 September 2011. 
  5. ^ "The Psychologist, November 2010 by The British Psychological Society". ISSUU. Retrieved 2015-10-19. 
  6. ^ Farrelly, Elizabeth (14 October 2010). "Gender and feminism, a guilt trip". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 28 September 2011. 
  7. ^ "The battle of the sex differences : Interview" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-10-19. 
  8. ^ [1] Archived 12 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ Salter, Jessica (14 September 2010). "World of Anne Fine, author". The Daily Telegraph. London. 
  10. ^ "FineLab homepage". Retrieved 2015-07-15. 
  11. ^ "Sorry". Royal Society. 2010-11-30. Retrieved 2015-07-15. 
  12. ^ "Cordelia Fine". Cordelia Fine. Retrieved 2015-10-19. 

External links[edit]