Here are some things I have heard on NPR recently:
- Why Women (Like Me) Choose Lower-Paying Jobs. A quote:
even when they choose high-paying majors, women often don’t choose high-paying jobs. For example, math is a pretty lucrative major, and more than 40 percent of math majors are women. But women who major in math are much more likely than men to go into lower-paying professions, like teaching.
- Fresh Air interview with Debora Spar, president of Barnard College.
I think what happened was that feminism was really a revolutionary movement, and like all revolutionary movements, it wasn’t about personal satisfaction or personal success. It was a social movement. It was about civil rights; it was about expanding access; it was about bringing fully half of the population into society with all of the rights and responsibilities that men had.
what we were getting was watered-down Charlie feminism, which is about this fantasy, this idea that we can have it all, that we can be everything. And I think once you start marching down that track it’s very easy to turn inward. Rather than seeing the opportunities that feminism created … they very easy morph into expectations.
It drains the energy out of the broader social goals, and it makes women nuts.
Sometimes, as your friendly neighborhood computer scientist, I feel like I’d be failing as a feminist if I chose to teach instead of trying for some super lucrative career (I need to defy stereotypes!!), and sometimes I think that’s ridiculous, because whatever it is, I’m pretty sure feminism as a social movement isn’t about being the best you can be at capitalism. These articles both got under my skin as I try to sort out my own feelings about this…