A Nobel Peace Prize winning biochemist has landed himself in hot water after making some baffling comments about female scientists.
Speaking to the World Conference of Science Journalists in Seoul, South Korea, Nobel laureate Tim Hunt said the trouble with “girls” is that they fall in love with male colleagues and burst into tears when criticised.
Calling for single-sex labs, presumably to allow the ‘real’ scientists to do their work in peace, Hunt said:
“Let me tell you about my trouble with girls … three things happen when they are in the lab … You fall in love with them, they fall in love with you and when you criticise them, they cry.”
The comments made by the known chauvinist, 72, were quickly tweeted by London journalism programme director Connie St. Louis, who was in the audience:
— Connie St Louis (@connie_stlouis) June 8, 2015
Apologising to the BBC, Hunt said:
“I’ve fallen in love with people in the lab and people have fallen in love with me,
“It’s really disruptive to the science… [but] I’m really, really sorry I caused any offence, that’s awful. I just meant to be honest actually.”
Having re-read Mr Hunts comments, I think it’s clear that the most pressing problem in science labs is not women at all, but rather a certain chauvinistic biochemist.