11.30.2005

On the one hand, I think it is particularly important to not push women into more vocational fields, because we have historically been pushed in that direction. I know that in teaching, I had a hard time coming to terms with the push of my more talented undergrads in a votech direction from the counseling office -- while I realized that they were being pragmatic, technical fields change too rapidly for higher education -- which I view as long term -- they require continuing education, IMO. My best writers or most driven junior coworkers were pushed to become medical assistants and low-level network technicians rather than reporters or managers.

Of course, there are always the professions, and I think that's fine, but there's absolutely no need to forgo a liberal arts education before beginning law school, business school, or medical school.

I remember a considerable push from the extended family (not my immediate family) towards my learning how to repair computers!, which I wisely resisted.

I also wonder about the wisdom of discouraging women from pursuing female-dominated professions. The Mrs. degree at my undergrad institution was art history, and led to a number of young women getting nice curator, interior design, and etc. jobs of the kind I would have liked (and still would like); I remember renaissance, medieval, and etc. studies being somewhat akin to the art history degree in purportedly leading a young woman with an amount of family money or a comfortable marital situation a pleasant and interesting career. I recognize that my writing is now seen in the same light.

I just think the idea that very many young women are seeking to solve their problems with marriage and child-bearing, and so have to be pushed toward something like telecoms to be feminists and "full human beings" is disingenuous and distasteful.

When will Americans stop making blanket generalizations or recommendations about the treatment of all people based on preventing stupid people from being stupid?

http://www.prospect.org/web/page.ww?section=root&name=ViewWeb&articleId=10659

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