(Re: [Techtalk] Theory vs. practice) AKA men vs women

Jodie Mann jomann22 at zonnet.nl
Tue Jan 15 09:10:35 EST 2002

Unfortunately, as with the battles of the sexes in any field of 
employment, stufy, life, there will never be agreement, purely because 
we are different.

Personally, I feel men and women should be treated as men and women and 
not get themselves all caught up in "who is better off than who".

Its tough being a women in a very male orientated environment... but 
hell, if a women is smart she will use that to her advantage. I work as 
a hardware consultant for Shell, one the most male chauvinist companies 
I've ever come across... but I haven't really had a single problem. If 
someone gives me hassle and its blatantly because I'm a girl, I ask 
them straight, "sir do you think I am any less capable because I am 
female... do you even know what a network cable is???":-)

If they still give you problems, shove em to someone else (God I love 
delegation/escalation). You dont deserve that treatment, they dont 
deserve your help or your intelligence.

As far as study goes, maybe I was lucky growing up in South Africa. In 
school we were taught about every field of study in our carreer 
guidance classes. We were also put to apptitude tests (where sex was 
not even registered) to discover where our talents lay... that was my 
first invitation to the world of computers in fact. My parents weren't 
the motivating types, or rather, they motivated us to be individuals 
and do the best we could do but we were not expected to achieve the top 
marks... I was a drama student and had no interest in computing 
whatsoever until that fateful apptitude test.

And now I'm beginning to lose my own plot methinks... But to cut it to 
a nice short point.

We may not have been encouraged (as females) into more technical 
carreers... but the past is the past... learn from it and teach your 

----- Origineel Bericht -----
Van: Mary Gardiner <linuxchix at puzzling.org>
Datum: Dinsdag 15 Januari 2002 4:15
Onderwerp: Re: Maths, women and programming (Re: [Techtalk] Theory vs. 

> On Mon, Jan 14, 2002 at 08:34:47PM -0600, Glenda R. Snodgrass wrote:
> > > Whatever is keeping women out of computing may be the same 
> thing that is
> > > keeping them out of maths, physics and engineering (~5% of all
> > 
> > I dunno, see, I believe those are very different cases.  I think the
> > computer field is so broad now, that being good in math and 
> liking math
> > should not be a limiting factor as to whether you can go into 
> computers at
> > all, rather what sub-field of computers you might want to 
> consider.  I
> I wasn't saying that it's the *same* girls who are being kept out of
> each of the careers I listed, just that it might be the same factor
> keeping them out.
> I've always felt that if nothing else, there is subtle discouragement.
> You were given active discouragement, but even if there is no active
> discouragement, there is silence. As a teenage girl who was good at
> maths and logic, I was encouraged to be a doctor or a lawyer by my
> parents. My boyfriend, also good at maths and logic, appears to have
> been considered by his family to be destined for computing, 
> whereas I
> was the child in trouble for "mucking around with that bloody 
> computer".
> I have no brothers, so I don't know if my parents were being subtly
> sexist or whether they simply didn't really think about computing 
> as a
> career path for anyone. I know that my boyfriend's father waits 
> for him
> to come home to fix the computer although his older sister (a 
> biologist)is just as competant at the things he wants. He took my 
> boyfriend along
> to be trained as a volunteer firefighter, and when I asked my 
> boyfriendwhy his sisters weren't taken along he said "I guess 
> noone really
> thought about it."
> I suspect boys who are interested in technical things as children 
> oftenwill get suggestions like "why don't you become a computer 
> programmer?"and boys who play Lego will hear "why don't you become 
> an engineer?"
> whereas a girl with similar interests may not hear disapproval, but
> won't have the helpful people pointing her in that direction. She'll
> have to discover it all by herself, and might chose to be a doctor or
> lawyer instead, because, hey, she'd be good at that too and had never
> even considered the other careers.
> Anyway, I suggest that this kind of lack of encouragement of girls 
> withanalytical talents suited to computing (and now other talents 
> too, since
> careers in computers are broadening as you point out) also happens to
> girls with talents suited to mathematical, physical or engineering
> careers, and so the problem of women in computing can't be 
> seperated too
> much from the lack of women in other technical and analytical 
> fields. So
> even if it isn't exactly the same requirements to be in all fields,
> girls with the different abilities suited to each of them are never
> being pointed in the right direction, and are often pointed in the 
> wrongone.
> So possibly the solution in each case is identical.
> -Mary.
> -- 
> Mary Gardiner
> <mary at puzzling.org>
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