Could it be that plain old mental habit is the reason for gender inequality at work? According to consultant and former businesswoman Caroline Turner, that’s pretty much what it comes down to. In a blog post for the Huffington Post, Turner said that the biggest reason women aren’t proportionately represented in business leadership positions is a set of “mind-sets,” or unconscious ways of viewing the world. The most powerful and deep-rooted of these mind-sets, it seems, is the “double bind,” or the idea that if a woman channels her more feminine energies, she’ll be liked by her coworkers but not seen as a leader. On the other hand, if she allows her masculine energies to lead the way, she’s likely to be judged and disliked. What I take this to mean is that the biggest obstacle we’re up against in the workplace is essentially subconscious stereotyping. Keep reading »
“It’s better not to argue with women. But Ms. Clinton has never been too graceful in her statements. Still, we always met afterwards and had cordial conversations at various international events. I think even in this case we could reach an agreement. When people push boundaries too far, it’s not because they are strong but because they are weak. But maybe weakness is not the worst quality for a woman.”
Well, we already knew Russian President Vladmir Putin‘s feelings on uppity women, so is it really a surprise that he made sexist comments about Hillary Clinton — and all women, really — and her leadership qualities in an interview posted on the Kremlin’s website? No, no we are not. Goodness gracious, Clinton hasn’t even announced a 2016 presidential run yet and already this horridness is starting. [Huffington Post]
A group of angry wackos are petitioning the United States government to classify feminism as a terrorist group. Yes, you can read that again.
The Change.org petition’s creator, Janet Wilkinson, included the following statement on its homepage (complete with Wilkinson’s typos left in for, ahem, clarity): Keep reading »
There are a lot of places women don’t get taken seriously as seriously as men — workplaces, sci-fi conventions, the military, politics — but a new study just proved that our culture’s tendency to think of women as weak and inconsequential actually has a measurable death toll, in a surprising form: hurricanes. Weather researchers noticed that hurricanes with female names usually result in more deaths. When they charted the numbers, they saw how dramatic the difference really is: in the past 50 years, the most damaging female-named hurricanes averaged 45 deaths each, while the most damaging male-named hurricanes averaged 23. That’s nearly double the loss of life. And the results were even more jarring when they compared storms with strong masculine names to storms with strong feminine names. According to the study, “The model suggests that changing a severe hurricane’s name from Charley … to Eloise … could nearly triple its death toll.” Keep reading »
A few months ago, I was having a rough time with my son. This is not unusual, as he is going through a particularly ornery stage and I am stubborn as a mule who is really good at yelling but not much else in the discipline realm. I ended up calling my parents for backup, and put them on the phone with my son as I stood in the bathroom listening to the conversation. Most of it was great. My dad was telling my son that he needs to listen to me because I’m the Mom and I have his best interests at heart and all that. But then! Then he told my son that he needed to change his behavior because he is “the man of the house,” and I “need” him to take care of me and our home. And that’s when I almost punched a hole through the wall. Keep reading »
Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman who is eight months pregnant, was sentenced to death last week for marrying a Christian man.
In Sudan, a woman is considered to be of the same faith as her father, but 27-year-old Ibrahim’s Muslim dad abandoned her family when she was six, and she was raised with the beliefs of her Christian mom. Ibrahim has identified as Christian her whole life (although her brother is Muslim), but the Sudanese legal system sees her as a converted former Muslim and now refuses to recognize her marriage to a Christian man. Men are able to marry outside their faith, but Muslim women in Sudan are only expected to marry men who are also Muslims. Keep reading »
It’s not often that a story about sexism ends with something really wonderful happening.
Daniel McCawley, the owner of Atomic Grill in Morgantown, West Virginia, read a comment on the restaurant rating site Urban Spoon saying that his waitresses should “show some more skin.” Gross, right? So McCawley actually did it … sort of. Keep reading »
“It meant more to our father to deal with a setback and try to bounce back than to watch how we handled our successes. Show what you are made of, he would say. Graduating from Wake Forest means all of you have experienced success already. And some of you — and now I’m talking to anyone who’s been dumped, not gotten the job you really wanted, or received those horrible rejection letters from grad school — you know the sting of losing. Or not getting something you badly want. When that happens, show what you are made of.”
Not many could have their firing on the front page of newspapers and still show their face the next week to deliver a commencement address. So for that reason alone, I admire Jill Abramson, the former executive editor of The New York Times, who was canned last week and spoke this morning at Wake Forest’s graduation. Regardless of what you think about Abramson’s firing and whose “side” you believe — Abramson was reportedly considered “pushy,” including about her pay and pension; the Times brass emailed staff saying she was was laid off because she wasn’t a good manager — the woman’s thoughts on resilience are worth listening to. [YouTube via Mashable]