More on Less

Dorothea Salo makes the following comment on Blog Sisters to Denise Howell’s post (see previous post here):
I really want to feel cynical about the rah-rah aren’t-women-great tone of this article. I really do. I really do.
But damn it, I am more ethical than many of my male counterparts. I do like my current all-female work environment better than the mixed ones I’ve been in. And I have toyed with finding a way to do things right on my own, since whenever I get hired to do things I end up forced to do them wrong.
I know some great guys and some terrible women, I admit. (I left my last job in large part because of a real dragon lady.) Still, I have to admit I think this article is on to something. Whether it’s all she’s cracking it up to be I’m not sure — but there’s a nugget of truth there

And I add the following:
Having fought the good fight back in the seventies, having worked for a dragon lady and a superb female manager (but not one male boss who could hold a candle to the latter), and now watching and reading about where women in the workworld are today — their struggles, their frustrations, the attitudes toward them — I see that we haven’t come a long way at all. The “good” guys out there understand what’s going on and don’t perpetuate the “good o’l boy, boys-will-be-boys” crap. The rest of ’em? Well, I for one am not going to let them get away with it. We should have the right to own our powerful female sexuality and not be demeaned for it, even in a (supposedly) spirit of public playfulness. (I do, however, believe that anything goes in private between consenting adults.)
I repeat all of this here because I think it needs to be repeated. Over and over again in many different forms and forums.

6 thoughts on “More on Less

  1. Hmmmm.
    These ‘arguments’ are so divisive.
    An arse is an arse is an arse.
    Are purple women any better than raspberry men?
    I long for the day when ‘content of the character’
    is real…and not the color or the gender.
    And when ethics are friggin’ ethics once again. Period.
    Hey, I can dream, can’t I?

  2. I also tend to be turned off by some of the “women are wonderful” effusions. In particular the following:
    “We should have the right to own our powerful female sexuality…”
    Wasn’t this a discussion of the workplace? What place does sexuality of any kind have there? That’s the whole problem for women, isn’t it — that men insist on sexualizing everything that women do? It’s not helpful for women to do the same, however well meant.

  3. Yes, we do, Richard.
    But it’s attitudes like this that creates even more diviseness:
    ‘But damn it, I am more ethical than many of my male counterparts.’
    And I certainly didn’t mean to imply that this shouldn’t have been posted. I mean no disrespect to anyone–and certainly not to Elaine, whom I have the utmost respect for.
    I just don’t think one’s maleness or femaleness is the real issue here.
    And I understand that the politics of victimization and Empowerment serves its purpose.
    And once you finally train the Good Ole Boys how to control their monkey lust and stop seeing you as pretty things, and you take over the reigns at the top, and break those glass ceilings and crawl over that cut glass to make a deal–
    will the nature of your ‘powerlust’ be somehow different?
    will it be ‘superior’ to theirs?

  4. Uh, Catana, I really wasn’t just referring to the workplace. It’s rather the way some men treat women at home, on the street, in stores, on the train or bus, etc. etc.
    Ray, uh uh. The point is to get us all on a collegial level, where we all deal with each other with respect and genuine friendship. No one should be on a power trip. I think the women who demonstrate power lust and become dragon ladies are trying to emulate the accepted male model for success. If it works for “them,” it should work for “us.” We all need more humane, egalitarian, respectful, nurturing role models. And I see more women bosses demonstrating that model than I see men bosses demonstrating that model. But I think it’s what we all should aim for. No power lust, no one asserting superiority over anyone else. That doesn’t mean that we should have strong leaders; but it does mean that the old boy model for what a leader is needs to go bye-bye too.

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