Thursday, April 5, 2012

Misogyny just isn't funny.

I realize I'm lucky to be a woman in science now, given the past overt discrimination, which is why the misogynistic comment from visiting speaker during our morning meeting caught me so off guard. Even in jest, it wasn't funny.

There were four of us (my postdoc advisor, a fellow postdoc, invited speaker, and me), and in introducing my fellow postdoc (FP), my advisor told a story about how FP had really saved the day on a specific project because it was time-sensitive, and the grad student working on it went on maternity leave, then the first postdoc working on it went on maternity leave, then the second postdoc working on it went on family leave for his sick father. The invited speaker responded with, "Well, that's why we shouldn't hire women."

That is the attitude that makes me seriously reconsider academia.

I should mention however, that my advisor was quick to respond that he's actually very happy to have so many women in his lab, and that they feel comfortable taking maternity leave, because its hard enough to be a woman in science. (win) And, my fellow postdoc spoke up to say that he is expecting a baby in September. (win)

Those are the attitudes that make me realize I can make it in academia.

Update: I'll be writing a longer version for the GWIS E-news. It won't be very different, but I'll post it here when it's done.

1 comment:

Alexis Rudd said...

I can't wait to see your full post! Let me know when it goes up!