DIY for (mostly) women...(7 Posts)
It's the title of a course at a local college. Not an NVQ level course, but an introduction to DIY for (mostly) women.
But to focus on the hanging of pictures, mirrors & curtain rails?
I can't help but feel they have gone down a dangerous road of stereotyping. Just take the term 'women' out of the course title & description!
If that was a course for women only, because they feel that women are more confident in their abilities without mansplainers around, then that'd be justified.
But yes, if men are welcome, too, then they can just take the term "women" out.
Like Vestal - I think there's a difference between a course for women, so women don't feel pushed out and a course for women's interests.
However, I don't see anything wrong with the contents - putting up a shelf, hanging curtain rails, picture rails - these are common household DIY tasks that don't fall under other banners like plumbing or decorating and it is useful to feel confident about doing (but can go horribly wrong if you don't and for which there are a bewildering array of fixings to navigate before you can even start)
I'm a female carpenter. You'd be surprised how many women have never used hand tools for anything other than flat pack. I get a lot of handy-man style requests, some women are paying joiner rates for really simple stuff.
We need more women in STEM, this could be a great opening and by stating what the course covers it stops being 'LEARN DIY' and instead 'here's how useful this course is'.
Trades have a terrible record with women, many leave within the first five years. Courses like this hopefully will open trades as a career option in a safe mansplain free space. I was very lucky to be taught by a group of men who welcomed women into the workspace.
I've also known some arseholes who think you need a penis to work a drill. Hopefully this course will have none and the attraction of that will open the learning opportunities to women.
I'd probably have called it 'DIY for Beginners' - less obviously stereotyping but still likely to attract more women than men. Perhaps the basis for funding was to deliver training to women only, however - particularly women who would not want to (or possibly be allowed to) attend the course if men were present.
Disclaimer: I have a guy who does all my DIY. Not my DH, my friend. I refuse to learn as it would just be too depressing to get wrong. He mainly does curtain rails for me, occasionally other drilling-type jobs although draws the line at drilling through tiles - understandable. That's what I'd like a course to cover, I guess. Drilling 101 and 102 (inc tiles), measuring stuff properly, some painting and decorating tasks, how to saw things to size and maybe anything electrical that can be done without safety risks. Not sure there is anything.
I'd go on it, partly because I rely on dh to do those sorts of jobs and I wish I didn't, and partly because the title suggests that I wouldn't be the only woman on it. I'm one of those annoying 'middle ground' people - I don't need women only groups (though they'd be OK), am fine in mixed groups but would worry about being the only woman in a DIY group.
I don't think it is that bad, as lots of women stereotype themselves, they would see a diy for beginners course and just presume it was for men and wouldn't even think of going. (Unless they were doing a course to meet men).
Of course the continuing labelling just continues the problem but how do you break the cycle?
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