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Category Archives: patriarchy

Via feministe: The arguement for paying moms less

The fact that mothers are under scrutiny for how much time they ‘waste’ while at work (taking phone calls from kids and having to pick them up on snow days etc) is itself sexist. Why don’t we ask how it is men can be productive, considering how constantly distracted they are by sex? Why don’t we ask how it is smokers can be productive? I repeat: the focus on women parents is sexist – and I’m not even tackling the inherent hypocrisy in pretending that we as a society care about families, while offering to pay those who do the family work less than others, thereby making it necessary for them to work even longer hours to make the money needed to cover the costs of working etc.

Only women are under this kind of scrutiny: how they dress, how much they weigh (overweight women make less money), how assertive they are or aren’t, how they choose lower paid jobs naturally (without consideration to why the jobs women choose pay less or what influences job choices), if they have children can they be as productive as those without children, if they don’t have children they are going to take maternity leave. Only women face these stereotypes; only women are always found wanting, found to be the makers of the sexism that prevents their success.

Yet, there are literally thousands of ways to ‘waste‘ time at work. Read More »

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A few unrelated things I found interesting.

First: This is what we call a paradigm shift.

Because of the release of the new movie, this great love letter to Ginny Weasley.

A judge’s proposed celebration for the birth of a girl. Via feministe.

And a story about the wealth gap between the older and younger generations.


I’d like to write more about this, but I have a thesis proposal to put together. It’s about what is called the motherhood penalty, the fact that moms in the workplace are routinely paid less and offered worse, less reliable positions than women without children, men without children, and men with children.

I’ll just say that I first noticed the motherhood penalty when I was working full-time when my second daughter was born. No woman in my office who chose to have children escaped some sort of repercussion. One woman asked, after she had been shifted from regular day work to irregular day/evening shifts, if she could be given a set schedule two weeks ahead of time so she could plan childcare. Management said “we didn’t ask you to have kids”. She left. Her husband, who worked in the same office but was apparently free from the responsibility to arrange childcare, stayed.

Anyway, more analysis on the new research here. And more about the motherhood penalty here.

Recently the mother of one of my daughter’s school friends commented about the protectiveness of this generation of parenting.

She said the mother of one of her older son’s friends called to tell her that she found her son searching for porn on the internet and called to let her know what the local 11-year-olds were getting into and was concerned that, if these boys were going to be viewing porn, that it be woman-positive.

This made the woman sharing the story with me laugh: now boys can’t even have their porn private she said, adding that Playboy just a part of childhood. I didn’t say anything to her, but I thought: what is on the internet isn’t Playboy, however harmless you do or do not think that magazine is.

Today’s boys are learning about sex from violent images that nobody would have seen as adults, never mind as a boy whose ideas of sexuality are just being shaped. Feminists can say this, but they aren’t taking seriously.

That’s why I love what this man has to say, via Feminist Law Professors. It’s the second video during which he gets talking about what younger boys are seeing and how this relates to the global sex trade and prostitution.

I’m hoping my girls hold out for the boys whose mothers talked to them about woman-positive porn…

Early to work this morning and sitting at his desk, drinking coffee is a pale-skinned, red-headed colleague of mine who is a rarity: a journalism “lifer”.

In the business for 20-some-odd years, he’s worked at newsrooms across Canada, everyone of them, almost without exceptions, dysfunctional messes, he went on to tell me.
I’m not sure how much longer I can put up with THIS place, I told him.
He gave me a pep talk – something he has done for almost every journalist in this place. He’s that kind of guy.

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I’m invoking the P-word for this post. Patriarchy.

Because working in an office arranged around the father-knows-best and father-is-the-law ideology is as damaging for worker morale and for workplace productivity (the biz term for making sure lots of work gets done so the company can make lots of money and enough profit to keep you in a job).

And it is the kind of workplace in which I have landed.

I’m a creative, go-by-my-gut, everything-will-get-done-if-I-don’t-have-to-slow-down-for-bureaucratic-details, passionate, part-time contrarian. Which isn’t a good fit for this workplace.

Things I have recently been reprimanded for:

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