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Feminism: chat

International Women’s Day vs reality

1 reply

Worldgonecrazy · 04/02/2022 08:33

My organisation is putting together a panel for IWD, all (real) women who have done amazing world-leading achievements in their field. Whilst not taking anything away from these women’s achievements or journey to the top I think that this just adds to the “you’re not good enough/trying hard enough” message that we constantly receive. That the underlying message is that these women made it despite circumstances so you should be able to achieve that greatness too, when the truth is that these women are an extreme exception in a patriarchal world.

I recall a disabled person saying that the Paralympics had made life worse as it created unrealistic expectations of what the average disabled person should be able to achieve.

My question is are we hindering ourselves by highlighting the exceptional women on IWD rather than bringing in speakers around bias, misogyny etc? And any suggestions for women who can explain the truth rather than the exceptions? I’m sure most of them are booked for this year but may be available next year.

OP posts:

NumberTheory · 04/02/2022 18:54

I think, ideally, you need a bit of both. Something to aspire to and something that gives you the practical advice and does the necessary constituency building to effect change and navigate the challenges that we do encounter.

For what it’s worth I don’t think I’ve ever been to an event on women in business that featured women who’d “made it” where those women didn’t have plenty to say about the struggles of doing that as a woman and how they managed to overcome them.

So I don’t think it’s a bad thing. But maybe it would be a good idea to suggest they also hold an event that centers women’s voices in a workplace wide discussion about a one of the problems women at your workplace most commonly bring up as a barrier to success?

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