Article labels Chess Players as 'paranoid thrill-seekers'

An article run by the online version of the Independent newspaper gives an interesting character profile of chess players. The article says, "Psychologists who studied more than 100 chess players say the game attracts sensation-seekers with a thirst for action and adventure on a par with skydivers, scuba divers, mountaineers and skiers."

The article continues, "When men win a game, the experts say, the rise of testosterone levels in the blood is just the same as that experienced by people who go in for risky sports." Perhaps this is the answer to the question of why there are so few women involved in tournament chess. You do have a numbers of exceptions, but the game is largely dominated by men who revel in combat games and are socialized to settle scores with force.

Roger Dobson, "Chess players 'are paranoid thrillseekers,' Independent (UK), 20 January 2002).

Posted by The Chess Drum: 22 January 2002