Come a Long Way, Baby?

Image3.img Newsweek has a much discussed article about the barriers that women still face in the workplace. (Thanks, Macaroni!)

The author writes that despite some obvious changes in the workplace, women are disillusioned. American women still lag behind other countries, including Cuba and Namibia, on rankings of financial and political success. Women (particularly women with children though the article didn't say that) lag behind men in terms of pay. "Female bylines at major magazines are still outnumbered by seven to
one; women are just 3 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs and less than a
quarter of law partners and politicians."  Susan Douglas is quoted in the article and concurs that much work is to be done. (And much work has to be done by me. I have to do a review of her new book, Enlightened Sexism.)

Does sexism still exist in your workplace?

4 thoughts on “Come a Long Way, Baby?

  1. You keep tempting me with interesting book recommendations. I don’t know whether to applaud or to rail at you for stretching my book-buying budget to the limit.
    Sexism still exists at my workplace, but much much less than when I was hired in the early 90s. I was the first woman hired in my department and I served on my share of committees where I was the “collective-agreement-mandated” token female (due to a clause that specified that there be at least one person of each gender on all hiring and personnel committees). Just the other year, we realized that we had to include a man on one department committee or risk violating the requirements in the other direction. So there was some progress, even if it took almost twenty years!

  2. I don’t know how to answer “Does sexism still exist in your workplace?”
    On the one hand, you can hardly help but notice that all of the secretaries are assistants are female, while only 3 of the 9 highest ranking partners are.
    On the other hand, the bosses are very flexible with child care issues, and promotions of lower-level employees seem even-handed and no one is penalized for having to run out to care for a sick kid. Recent promotions have been about 50/50, and “3 out of 9” is really only 1.5 women short of 50/50.
    (It’s also a somewhat weird place as it is culturally dominated by an eclectic mix of female Republicans and male Democrats.)
    I’d say that my workplace reflects the sexism in society, but doesn’t actively add to it — which may be good enough.

  3. In my workplace what I’ve found interesting is that on the print side of it, it’s not so bad – not 50-50 but there are a number of female publishers, editors in chief, etc.
    But on the newer, digital side, the positions with real power (VPs, directors, etc.) are almost exclusively male while the people who enact the vision are almost exclusively female. I guess it comes out of the tech side of the business but it’s pretty obvious – and annoying.

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