After posting Of Men and Women last week, believe it or not, AC has yet more grist for the mill, or more fuel for the fire, or, perhaps more aptly, more nuts for the overflowing dish. To wit: women are rapidly gaining the upper hand. Perhaps, Frank Herbert's vision as depicted in the Dune series with the Bene Gesserit etc is coming true.
Let me begin with a personal observation. When I take JJ to storytime at the library I can't help but notice that the tendency is for the boys to be much more easily distracted and sidelined than the girls. They are prone to roam and jostle while the girls are likely to sit primly and properly and pay undivided attention. Thankfully, JJ is one of the more attentive boys, perhaps the most attentive; hopefully, this bodes well for him in school and beyond.
Hanna Rosin has noticed something similar but far more extensively in her book The End of Men: And the Rise of Women. I do have a nerve referencing the book because I haven't read it, but I have read an article in the National Post about the book and have also read her article The End of Men, published in Atlantic Monthly two year sago. Finally, I have watched and am linking to her TED Talk, New Data on the Rise of Women, as well as embedding it below for both your convenience and viewing pleasure.
With all of those references for dear reader to follow if interested, I here list some key points to ponder, most of which are direct quotes from her Atlantic Monthly article. There's much more information in both the article and the video (linked here but also embedded below)if this topic interests you as much as it interests me. (Emphasis below, where used, is mine.)
- ... in
the wreckage of the Great Recession, in which three-quarters of the 8 million
jobs lost were lost by men. The worst-hit industries were overwhelmingly male
and deeply identified with macho: construction, manufacturing, high finance.
Some of these jobs will come back, but the overall pattern of dislocation is
neither temporary nor random. The recession merely revealed—and accelerated—a
profound economic shift that has been going on for at least 30 years, and in
some respects even longer.
every two men who will receive a B.A. this year, three women will do the same.
Of the 15 job categories projected to grow the most in the next decade in the
U.S., all but two are occupied primarily by women.
Women now earn 60 percent of master’s degrees, about half of all law and
medical degrees, and 42 percent of all M.B.A.s. Most important, women earn
almost 60 percent of all bachelor’s degrees—the minimum requirement, in most
cases, for an affluent life … “One would think that if men were acting in a
rational way, they would be getting the education they need to get along out
there,” says Tom Mortenson, a senior scholar at the Pell Institute for the
Study of Opportunity in Higher Education. “But they are just failing to adapt.”
Men dominate just two of the 15 job categories projected to grow the most over
the next decade: janitor and computer engineer. Women have everything
else—nursing, home health assistance, child care, food preparation.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women now hold 51.4 percent of
managerial and professional jobs—up from 26.1 percent in 1980. They make up 54
percent of all accountants and hold about half of all banking and insurance
jobs. About a third of America’s physicians are now women, as are 45 percent of
associates in law firms—and both those percentages are rising fast. A
white-collar economy values raw intellectual horsepower, which men and women
have in equal amounts. It also requires communication skills and social
intelligence, areas in which women, according to many studies, have a slight
In 1970, women contributed 2 to 6 percent of the family income. Now the typical
working wife brings home 42.2 percent, and four in 10 mothers—many of them
single mothers—are the primary breadwinners in their families.
- (speaking of traditional patriarchal societies such as South Korea or India) … Now the centuries-old preference for sons is eroding—or even reversing. “Women of our generation want daughters precisely because we like who we are,” breezes one woman in Cookie magazine. Even Ericsson, the stubborn old goat, can sigh and mark the passing of an era. “Did male dominance exist? Of course it existed. But it seems to be gone now. And the era of the firstborn son is totally gone.”
I appreciate such info from Hanna Rosin and think this is an important issue for our sociologists to study and of which our parents should be aware.