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Left handed

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suze
1002332.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 4:44 pm Reply with quote

I'm sure there are lots of interesting things to be said about left handedness, but I can't think of them right now.

Barack Obama and David Cameron are both left handed. So is Bill Clinton and so was Usama bin Ladin, but George W Bush favours the right. (Well would you just fancy that!)

As everyone who watches QI knows, the Inuit used to believe that polar bears are all left handed, but it's not true. Although the polar bear on the Greenland coat of arms is left handed, rather in defiance of usual heraldic convention.

Amino acids, on the other hand, are all left handed. (Unless you are a cone snail, but you're not.) We don't really know why this is the case, and some of those who reject the notion of evolution use the lack of right handed amino acids as part of their argument.

You'll sometimes here it claimed that the Arabs and/or the Jews developed their right-to-left writing systems so that left handed people - of which, it is claimed, they had more than the usual number - wouldn't smudge when they wrote. Totally untrue, and in fact both North Africa and the Middle East have a lower incidence of left handedness than Europe and India. In which territories left-to-right writing systems have always predominated.

OK, so who knows the interesting things?

 
germananglophile
1002339.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 4:51 pm Reply with quote

suze wrote:
Barack Obama and David Cameron are both left handed. So is Bill Clinton and so was Usama bin Ladin, but George W Bush favours the right. (Well would you just fancy that!)


Several Simpsons characters are left-handed. Most notably Bart himself, Ned Flanders and Barkeeper Moe. Marge is listed as 'ambidextrous', though I happen to know that a favoured hand vastly depends on clarity of staging within a scene set up. ;)

http://simpsons.wikia.com/wiki/Left-handed

 
djgordy
1002341.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 4:54 pm Reply with quote

Ned Flanders opened a shop called "Leftorium" which catered for all things left handed.

 
germananglophile
1002343.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:01 pm Reply with quote

I seemed to remember that in earlier centuries left-handed people were forced to use the right hand by re-training, as there were tons of superstitions attached to being left-handed (mostly an association with the Devil).
I stumbled upon this, which I think has some interesting points regarding this matter as well as a whole list of superstitions surrounding 'lefties':

http://www.anythinglefthanded.co.uk/lh-info/myths.html#sthash.u5Q52vOD.dpbs

 
'yorz
1002345.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:15 pm Reply with quote

germananglophile wrote:
I seemed to remember that in earlier centuries left-handed people were forced to use the right hand by re-training

Earlier centuries? I am not that ancient. I attended pretty easy-going schools, but have heard from friends that they were forced to learn to write with their right hand. This practice often would result in the pupils developing a stutter.

 
germananglophile
1002347.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:19 pm Reply with quote

'yorz wrote:
germananglophile wrote:
I seemed to remember that in earlier centuries left-handed people were forced to use the right hand by re-training

Earlier centuries? I am not that ancient. I attended pretty easy-going schools, but have heard from friends that they were forced to learn to write with their right hand. This practice often would result in the pupils developing a stutter.


o_O
STILL??? Wow. Poor Dears.
Edit: Though I do hope that in their cases the misguided reasoning wasn't still based on the fear that they otherwise might be possessed by the devil?!

 
'yorz
1002349.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:50 pm Reply with quote

No, that was a given. It was just a matter of saving their souls.

 
Awitt
1002351.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:53 pm Reply with quote

I'm glad that's finally been stopped, as a leftie myself. When my artistic/photographic friends did archery a few years back, around 8 of us creative souls were lefties, so I wasn't alone!

Though I have been called a freak within my immediate family for it.

 
franticllama
1002353.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:58 pm Reply with quote

I think most of the population would consider me fairly young (if I'd chosen to go to university I'd be finishing my undergraduate degree this year) and I'm essentially ambidextrous. When I learnt to write I wasn't given much choice about what hand I used and I didn't mind being made to use my right, however I really favoured my left hand when it came to using scissors. I had a year of extra cutting lessons to get me to use my right hand. I have no idea why it was such a priority and I don't think the reasoning was anything to do with the devil (though I did go to a catholic school so most things were eventually linked back to the devil) I think the teacher genuinely thought it would be more helpful for me to go through life right handed, pretty misguided but there you go

 
suze
1002360.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:27 pm Reply with quote

As regards scissors I suppose it just might be advantageous to be right handed.

You can't absolutely guarantee that any future workplace in which you might need to use scissors will have left handed scissors available. Although if you'd already managed to learn to cut left handed using right handed scissors, the issue completely dissolves.

But being made to write right handed is really indefensible in the modern world. Advice to teachers in the UK by now is that left handers are not to be made to write right handed, but it clearly hasn't completely gone away and it's still standard practice in many countries. Especially less developed countries, but also Japan.

 
Awitt
1002365.  Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:47 pm Reply with quote

At my recent library job, I ended up taking in my own pair of scissors for cutting the book covering materials, since the 'school' pairs didn't exactly work for me. Not that big a deal, I'm used to it and realise now that I may have to do it.

 
bemahan
1002389.  Fri Jun 07, 2013 1:45 am Reply with quote

There is a thread about left-handed writing on the Quite Interesting forum.

 
Sadurian Mike
1002401.  Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:55 am Reply with quote

Yes, but having been written the wrong way around, most of us can't read it.

 
Sadurian Mike
1002403.  Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:56 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
(Unless you are a cone snail, but you're not.)

I am.

 
djgordy
1002406.  Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:02 am Reply with quote

.epyt ot dnah tfel ym esu ot ekil semitemos I

 

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