Asked on formspring by a reader of Underbellie. Keep in mind I am no expert on high finance but was asked to weigh in on an article that concerns this world:
Along the lines of your posts on underbellie on society devaluing mothers, two thoughts – The first, best summed up here:
“Wall Street’s Disappearing Women” at forbes.com
And the second, this whole hatred for “breeders”. Discuss!
I am just now getting to this question as I found that Forbes article difficult to wade through. My first thought: even despite data, facts, and many (heretofore unimpeachable) professional women’s testimonies, it is still impressive how many people will try to come up with ANY possible reason these women “deserve” a disproportionate rate of firing and or (fake) “layoffs” (my favorite line of reasoning: new mothers categorically “lose their edge”. Complete and utter bullshyt).
The story of Rosenberg and Bostjancic at Merrill (and Bostjancic’s immediate replacement after years of “stellar” work) is a very telling (and predictable, and depressing) one. In fact all the stories are depressing(ly familiar) and I wish these fighting women luck in their suits brought against these companies. As women in powerful positions the battle they’re waging has far-reaching implications for all professional women and (I’d hope) even working- and middle-class women.
As long as women are still expected to do most of the childrearing, and then punished when they *do* have children (or evidence of family life), it’s pretty obvious how severely the deck is stacked against them. I had some of this fallout in my career as an engineer but for brevity’s sake I will not go into it now; if you’d like to chat more do re-question or send me an email at kelly AT hogaboom DOT org.
Back to the Forbes article: compare the reactions to professional women and their marginalization especially when it comes to family life with the reactions regarding suggested changes at Downing Street (not corporate but the highest gov’t office in Britian):
Notice anything similar? Women are expected to be doing all the at-home stuff, and expected not to lead, to be paid, or afforded status for their “less important” work.
If you are interested in more evidence regarding our less-than-egalitarian country regarding men and women’s roles in the workplace and family, I recommend adding this blog to your feed reader:
I’m sure there are better ones but this is one I enjoy.
“This whole hatred for ‘breeders'”: goodness. This is where I lose my chipper optimism and just begin to feel despair. First of all, the hatred of “breeders” is of course disproportionally heaped on A. women and B. children (OMG you childfree grownup you are *so awesome* for picking on a four year old!). Secondly, it’s about the most short-sided kind of hatred I can think of, by turns insensitive, callous, and selfish. Only miliseconds ago according to the calendar of our Earth YOU were born and cared for and fed and raised up and clothed; mere milliseconds from now you will be aging and dying, your body failing and nurses and family and friends ushering you on with kindness and compassion (if you are fortunate to live a natural life). In addition, any of us are only one accident away or one illness away from disability. Boy, in all THOSE cases (infancy, illness, old age, disability, our death bed) we sure will be happy for those nice people who give selflessly to care for us!
But for now? F*ck those snot-nosed brats and their cattle-like parents (moms).
So, so sad. I’m glad breeder-hate is a rare and vocal minority, but I do feel so down when I see it. It demonstrates some of the worst qualities human beings can evidence.
Thank you very much for your input; your article was a good one to share.