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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
    So, while many of my male peers work for individual success, I find that I'm working for others' ambition. Not sure if that's a sex thing or an individual "completely unambitious" thing.
    I'm also a science graduate student, but I'm not this way so I don't think it's related to being female. I work for my own individual success and not for the ambition of others not even my advisor. I do respect his expectations and standards of course but I also have my own internal goals that I focus on daily - and I get all of my ambition from there. I've been treated differently than males but the further I get towards the end of my PhD the less often that happens. In the end the data speaks for itself, which is one of the reasons I enjoy science. There are definitely politics in academia but a great idea, hard-work, and solid data still means something male or female.

  2. #12
    lab rat extraordinaire CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Hmmm....I think I'm experiencing this to a degree at the moment. Currently I'm working in a male dominant situation, and I can't count how many times my ideas are being dismissed, yet the younger and less intellingent male who started with me can repeat my ideas and get clapped on the back for being perceptive. I quite literally have to lose my temper to get any acknowledgement at all, which at the moment isn't doing me favours, rather reinforcing their intial perception of me, still you should see them scramble to attention when I do. Actually half the time they seem surprized anything intellingent comes out of my mouth at all. I don't want to raise the spectre of sexism, at this current time, because otherwise, they are damn supportive, but it's becoming apparent that I'm some what of an anomaly to them.
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

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  3. #13
    Diabolical Kasper's Avatar
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    Experience that all the time. Sadly. There is a certain disrespect in the form of dismissal of ideas/opinions that is allowed to be directed towards women that, when the behaviour of people who do so are observed, they do not direct at men.

    I've found in life I am evaluated by my sex first, my merit second. With few exceptions.

    Age also has an impact here though. Older man > younger man > women.

    The most obvious example in my work place was when a man in his 40s joined to take up a junior role in out IT department, as a department head myself I could clearly see this man be given more respect and value of opinion than I was, directors would come in and make a point of interacting with him on the same level while females would be dismissed. It carried over to his expectation of being treated with more respect, backed by management in their attitude, and that women in higher positions of authority should be undertaking secretarial type roles that are not part of their job while he should be excused from them, things such as answering the phone. Needless to say I was joyous when he left but demoralised that there is such a split in how the sexes are treated at my place of work. You can't fight that as what you say is already dismissed.

  4. #14
    lab rat extraordinaire CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trinity View Post
    Experience that all the time. Sadly. There is a certain disrespect in the form of dismissal of ideas/opinions that is allowed to be directed towards women that, when the behaviour of people who do so are observed, they do not direct at men.

    I've found in life I am evaluated by my sex first, my merit second. With few exceptions.

    Age also has an impact here though. Older man > younger man > women.

    The most obvious example in my work place was when a man in his 40s joined to take up a junior role in out IT department, as a department head myself I could clearly see this man be given more respect and value of opinion than I was, directors would come in and make a point of interacting with him on the same level while females would be dismissed. It carried over to his expectation of being treated with more respect, backed by management in their attitude, and that women in higher positions of authority should be undertaking secretarial type roles that are not part of their job while he should be excused from them, things such as answering the phone. Needless to say I was joyous when he left but demoralised that there is such a split in how the sexes are treated at my place of work. You can't fight that as what you say is already dismissed.
    This is exactly what I'm experiencing.
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

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  5. #15
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    I'm not sure. For example, I have experienced unfounded cheating accusations from a female professor on the grounds that "males usually don't put that much effort in optional workshops" (I did because I liked the subject). Women now populate colleges in much higher precentage than males, because school usually doesn't "reward" typical male characteristics. There seems to be a system of self-creating checks and balances where an individual who's been favoured during period of time t1, will likely ecounter resistance during the subsequent time-interval.
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  6. #16
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    Thanks for sharing a very interesting article, I think I'll actually pass it on to my lab to read.

    I'm blessed to have a very successful woman (who is also a very nice person) as my research supervisor, and we were just talking about this the other day! I mentioned to her that I didn't feel a sense of sexism in the workplace, and she said that when she started at the university (roughly 10 years ago?) she had to work very hard to earn the respect of her peers - she heard sexist nicknames and comments about her clothes, and was directed to more trivial/social assignments - all in a nonmalicious but disrespectful way. Things seem much better now but I have a feeling it's because she has individually earned respect, more than from the improving culture (though I do think things are improving).

    It's definitely true that the number of women in science at the undergraduate level has skyrocketed recently so they've surpassed men in numbers, and perhaps even at the graduate level. Looking around my lab, there are more female MSc students...but more male PhD students and way more male post-docs. And the profs at my uni are maybe 70% male (about the same as the post-docs).

    I think this reflects a lower desire in women to pursue "higher" levels in their career - whether because they won't like the work, they fear sexism/children hurting their career, they want a good work/LIFE balance, they aren't ambitious, or they see a workplace dominated by men and few female role models....who knows really. Probably some of the above apply to various women choosing to end with a MSc or BSc instead of continuing to a PhD.
    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
    Thoughts? I must say that as a female (science) graduate student...
    Do you mind if I ask what your research area is? Always curious about other female grad students. I'm in medical research, myself.

    edit: spin, as well - though I may assume some sort of chemistry from your name?
    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    I'm sorry... I didn't read the whole article that you quoted, but in my experience (as a woman in the field of engineering), it seems to me that it is very equitable... until children enter the equation.
    I've noticed this as well, especially in research when you're expected to keep abreast of all the new developments and new techniques in your area, it can be really tough to come back, especially after several children. I've seen one prof on my floor come back recently after about 3 years of mat leave, I'm very curious to see how things go for her.

    As I said my supervisor is very hardworking and successful in her career so she's an excellent role model there, but she doesn't have children and I'm confident that I want them, and probably fairly early in my career, too. So I'm a little nervous about that aspect.

    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post

    Like you, I am currently working in a supportive and considerate environment where most of the danger comes from me overworking to make sure that I don't disappoint. So, while many of my male peers work for individual success, I find that I'm working for others' ambition.
    That's really interesting, I feel the same way sometimes - not in terms of the overall degree, that's for myself, but on a day to day basis I'm most easily motivated by the short-term goal of avoiding disappointment. mostly from my supervisor. It's hard to think of the long-term motivation of my future success! I don't think it's a gender related thing, or at least not exclusively. I'm just more interested in my quality of life than in achieving a high level in my career. I want to still have a life outside of work.
    -end of thread-

  7. #17
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    Fuck. Maybe I should change my name to James?
    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
    I must say that as a female (science) graduate student, I do feel like I am taken seriously most of the time, and addressed on the merits/lack thereof of my ideas rather than my sex. But perhaps that is because I've never felt the level of respect that a male student would have, and therefore have lowered expectations. Or maybe it's because I haven't been screwed over career-wise because of my sex (yet)?
    Like Roughgarden says:

    "When it comes to bias, it seems that the desire to believe in a meritocracy is so powerful that until a person has experienced sufficient career-harming bias themselves they simply do not believe it exists … By far, the main difference that I have noticed is that people who don't know I am transgendered treat me with much more respect: I can even complete a whole sentence without being interrupted by a man."
    I'm self-employed, in part, so that I don't have to deal with most of this crap, but at the last client I worked for, I experienced serious discrimination after a change of management. I'm familiar with the physical intimidation the article describes. Being screamed at and "handled" and humiliated in every way imaginable. Often this happens after a woman refuses to validate a man in a position of authority by responding to sexual innuendo or advances in the expected "feminine", submissive way. It's disgusting. I've encountered plenty of other women who have been sexually harassed or bullied (same thing) at work.
    People who believe equality is a reality are seriously deluding themselves.

    It's really only transgendered people who can convincingly carry out this sort of experiment, and there just aren't that many around.

    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Women now populate colleges in much higher precentage than males, because school usually doesn't "reward" typical male characteristics. There seems to be a system of self-creating checks and balances where an individual who's been favoured during period of time t1, will likely ecounter resistance during the subsequent time-interval.
    How is this balance? What you are saying is that women excel where they are assessed purely on the basis of competence (i.e. in education) yet in spite of that, they are discriminated against where it actually matters - the workplace.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  8. #18
    Feline Member kelric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan Le Fay View Post
    How is this balance? What you are saying is that women excel where they are assessed purely on the basis of competence (i.e. in education) yet in spite of that, they are discriminated against where it actually matters - the workplace.
    It isn't balance. But I think there's more involved in this particular situation, and I think that FDG has a point -- people are given more "respect" when fulfilling roles that others expect of them. And in many workplaces, the culture (and management) has grown up with a culture in which men in the workplace were more prevalent (particularly in decision-making and technical roles). In many cases, those people grew up in the 50's and early 60's, when things were very different with regard to breaking "traditional gender roles". I'm *NOT* making excuses here. People do have a responsibility, in this day and age, to break out of those behaviors -- but sometimes we as people get into a "coasting" mode, and need to get called on it. I don't think it's a matter of education being a matter of "competence" and workplace being a matter of something else (I'll get into the part about academic research below).

    I do believe that there's a generational component -- I truly think that this will get better (for women) in the future. I think that it *is* better than it was... it's just taking time. All we can do is keep moving in the right direction. While we're at it, we need to make sure that things move in the other direction in areas where men have been historically prejudiced against (such as child custody disputes). I know I may be a little off-topic there, but it's not an issue that only women have to deal with.

    I've spent a number of years in medical research (no longer, thank goodness ), and I think that the academic environment there does tend to favor a "male" lifestyle choice -- not necessarily "men", but the "give up my life for my job" mentality that I think tends to be more prevalent in men than women. So it doesn't bother me that more men tend to choose that -- as long as the women that *do* choose it have an equality in opportunity and respect when they're there.
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  9. #19
    Don't Judge Me! Haphazard's Avatar
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  10. #20
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trinity View Post
    Age also has an impact here though. Older man > younger man > women.
    I agree. I don't want to go into big detail here, but anyone who doesn't think the world, including the business world, is still very patriarchal is incredibly naive, deluded or blind.

    Ever work with a group of women and then a man joins that group, even as a peer? Automatically he assumes a position of leadership, and the women typically accept this. Most of them will even fawn over him ... stroke the male ego.

    As a woman working in IT, it's a very common experience to have a group of male colleagues over-run, even ignore you in conversation; I've been told not to worry my "pretty little head" about solving problems, to let the "men" take care of them ... I've been in meetings as the lone female developer and had people ask me to go get coffee. It's pretty shocking in a way - I am not here to take notes, boys. I have to counter this brand of discrimination with a whole arsenal of tools to establish my credibility and ground in new environments. This will typically take anywhere from 3 to 6 months in a contract where I am the "new kid on the block." In my opinion, new male programmers on a project are seldom expected to prove they "belong" like a woman does. Once I have established my "right" to be there, I do get treated much better actually, but it's annoying that as a person with very well-established credentials I still have to prove I am "smart" enough to get to work with the men on equal footing with equal rapport and equal say.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan Le Fay View Post
    I'm self-employed, in part, so that I don't have to deal with most of this crap, but at the last client I worked for, I experienced serious discrimination after a change of management. I'm familiar with the physical intimidation the article describes. Being screamed at and "handled" and humiliated in every way imaginable. Often this happens after a woman refuses to validate a man in a position of authority by responding to sexual innuendo or advances in the expected "feminine", submissive way. It's disgusting. I've encountered plenty of other women who have been sexually harassed or bullied (same thing) at work.
    People who believe equality is a reality are seriously deluding themselves.
    @bold: I coordinate with programmers overseas and I never tell them I am a woman. I always let them believe I am a man. I don't get treated with the same courtesy and respect as a woman. SO, I communicate via e-mail and never reveal my gender. Just so much easier. "Oh yes, Mr. PB sir, we are happy to work with you."

    @green: Yep, as soon as a man doesn't think he can fully "control" you (as your BOSS; certainly not ALL men) it can spell trouble. Ironically, one of my worst bosses was a woman though ... same kind of issue.

    @purple: Yes, and I have worked in many different places and it happens everywhere. Sadly.

    @blue: indeed. And this isn't to point fingers at where the problem lies - I know many men who sincerely believe in equality. Somehow, though, in the execution of so-called equality, it often falls apart. Whether this is due to our inherent gender programming or our cultures or even physiology I don't know, but true equality is a long way off and may never really be fully viable.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

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