Dave Whiteland wrote:
But I think my point about the bias still stands... at the seminar, it was teaching not demonstration (the demonstrations were at the end of the event), and even for things like tai-sabaki, with next to nothing going on, from the pool of 50/50 male/female participants, the choice of uke was unerringly consistent. Like I said, this went on too long to be down to chance; but I am willing to believe it was subconcious. Maybe that subconcious bias is indeed engendered by the issues you suggest.
Well, to be fair, at gatherings where you don't know everyone, there is often a tendency to pick as Uke's the people who look like they're probably able to do ukemi well. So your eye looks around for the male victim... er, volunteer with obvious athleticity, etc,... not out of any subconscious desire to avoid women or the smaller, weaker males (remember, they're getting left out disproportionately, too), but out of a desire to pick someone out of a group of unknowns who can do ukemi and do it without getting injured. I.e., avoiding injury while making a clean teaching point is more on most peoples' minds, I suspect, than even considering gender equality and other side issues.