In sport, a critical mass of right-handers are required to make left-handers look good.
Among persecuted minorities, left-handers stand out as distinctly stoic. They have been hounded by historic prejudice. The physical manifestations of right-hand bullying – the right-handed school desk and inkwell, the beatings given to innocent lefties whose handwriting sloped the “wrong” way, the psychological suffering that displaced left-handers suffered – all this is only part of the injustice.
The allegorical stigma runs even deeper. The Protestant world view had a special term for Catholics: “left-footers”. If lefties weren’t heretics, they were Satanists. In medieval woodcuts, the devil baptised his followers with his left hand.
Apart from the occasional counter-example – such as “left field”, which provides this column with a title – words associated with the left usually come with health warnings. (Disclosure: I write with my left hand, though I was a right-handed batsman.)
When my wife and I named our son Dexter, my university tutor asked if, for the sake of consistency, we planned to name a second child Sinister. In a cowardly move, we ignored the advice. For only when little Sinisters and Sinistras gambol happily around the playground can we say that the struggle for justice by left-handers in a right-leaning world is complete.
For left-handed readers – estimated at just over ten per cent of the population – I bring mixed news. The good news is that in certain professions left-handedness brings major benefits. The bad news, however, is that as evidence grows of current left-handed supremacy, it will rebound against lefties in the future. A forlorn possibility looms: are we witnessing “peak left-handedness”?
It has long been known that left-handedness offers a competitive advantage in some professional sports. But the extent is uneven across different sports. According to Florian Loffing, from the University of Oldenburg …read more
Source:: New Statesman