This week’s #FoodieFriday takes us back to the 1950s and more specifically to an educational video that instructs women on how to shop for their families. This type of video would probably have been shown in a home economics class. Do you remember watching videos like these when you were growing up?
Elizabeth Jane Cochrane, known as “Nellie Bly,” reached international celebrity status when she traveled around the world by ship, train and burro in 72 days, 6 hours and 11 minutes, ahead of the fictional hero of Jules Verne’s popular book “Around the World in Eighty Days.” Her journey began today in 1889.
Bly’s big break, though, came two years before her round-the-world trip, when she faked insanity to study an asylum from the perspective of a patient. After months of rejection from editors on the basis of her sex, Bly received the opportunity to investigate the insane asylum from the New York World. Jean Marie Lutes, a scholar of women journalists, argues that Bly’s success with this story was, in part, due to her “female-ness.” Lutes suggests that because Bly was a woman, and therefore already outside the traditional image of a “reporter” in 1887, she was able to go beyond the limits of traditional reporting for her story:
“Bly’s reportage exulted in the concrete specifics of one individual’s experience and scorned the relative abstraction of disinterested observation. By adopting the hysteric’s hyperfemale, hyperexpressive body, she created her own story and claimed the right to tell it in her own way. Moreover, impersonating insanity allowed her to flaunt the very characteristics that were being used to bar women from city newsrooms: her female-ness, her emotional expressiveness, her physical—even her explicitly sexual—vulnerability.” (1)
On the basis of her diversity—by virtue of being, as a woman, an outsider to the profession—Bly was able to generate huge success. Her success was not just a personal achievement. Bly changed the field of reporting entirely with her innovative investigative techniques, and paved the way for important works of investigative journalism in the early 20th Century: for example, Ida Tarbell’s The History of the Standard Oil Company (1904) and Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle (1906). Nellie Bly’s career is a powerful example of how diversity in the workplace can strengthen a business (or, in this case, an entire profession) in unexpected ways.
(1) Lutes, Jean Marie. “Into the Madhouse with Nellie Bly: Girl Stunt Reporting in Late Nineteenth-Century America.” American Quarterly, Vol. 54, No. 2 (June 2002). Page 218. Emphasis added.
Read the original MSN article here.
A fast food restaurant chain has created a new face mask for Japanese women to use when eating one of their burgers to avoid a cultural faux pas.
In Japan, it is regarded as attractive to have what’s known as “ochobo’ – a small and modest mouth – and doing the opposite, such as eating a large meal, is frowned upon as rude and ugly.
So much so that one Japanese fast food chain, Freshness Burger, found their sales were plummeting because female customers did not want to be seen with their open mouths in public.
Freshness Burger, however, has create a simple solution called The Liberation Wrapper and sales have gone through the roof.
This wrapper is a paper napkin which holds the burger and covers the mouth with a picture of a polite smile.
But behind the napkin, the female customer can happily eat their burger without committing a social sin.
Dentsu East Japan, the company hired to come up with The Liberation Wrapper told the The Daily Mail “Their (Freshness Burger) largest and best-tasting Classic Burger was amongst the least chosen by their female customers.
“One of the major reasons seems to relate to Japanese manner…. It is good manner to cover their mouth when they have to largely open up their mouth [to eat].
“Our female customers had a frustration of not being able to do it.
“Freshness Burger decided to challenge convention, freeing women from the spell of Ochobo mouth.”
The company said sales have soared 213 per cent in just one month since introducing it.
On this day in 1916, Jeannette Rankin was elected to the House of Representatives, becoming the first U.S. congresswoman. She represented Montana twice: from 1917-1919 and from 1941-1943. In Congress, Rankin was known for her pacifism. She was one of just 50 members of Congress to vote against entry into WWI in 1917, and the only Congressperson to oppose declaring war on Japan in 1941. This gave her the distinction of being the only person in Congress to vote against both world wars.
Rankin was a proponent of female participation in the government and the public sphere. This post will examine how Rankin advocated for this progressive cause by drawing on more conservative rhetoric: in particular, the argument of “Republican Motherhood.”
The phrase “Republican Motherhood” was developed in the late 20th century by historians to name a particular opinion about women’s roles that was influential from the colonial era through the early 20th century. It described the notion that motherhood was a civic duty, and that women’s primary responsibility was to impart ideals of republicanism onto the next generation. It imbued women’s work in the private sphere—childrearing, in particular—with meaning and significance to the nation, thereby rendering women’s political activism and work beyond the home superfluous. Read the rest of this entry »
The Huffington Post | By Ariel Edwards-Levy
Check out the original article.
Women and unmarried voters played a crucial role in Democratic businessman Terry McAuliffe’s surprisingly narrow win in the Virginia governor’s race over Republican state attorney general Ken Cuccinelli.
Polls throughout the race found Cuccinelli, a tea party-backed social conservative, lagging among women. While final exit poll results weren’t yet available, data late Tuesday showed McAuliffe leading Cuccinelli by 9 percentage points among women, 51 percent to 42 percent. Cuccinelli had a 3-point lead among men, 48 percent to 45 percent.
The division along the lines of marital status was especially stark.
Cuccinelli was ahead among married people of both genders, with a 6-point lead among married men and a 9-point lead among married women. But unmarried voters, especially women, preferred McAuliffe by wide margins. He beat Cuccinelli by 25 points among unmarried men and 42 points among unmarried women. Unmarried voters made up about a third of Tuesday’s electorate, according to polls. Read the rest of this entry »
A recent article from slate.com explores the disturbing trend of successful women in the workplace being more likely to think of themselves as less competent and worthy of the success they have achieved–a phenomenon known as imposter syndrome.
Do Women Everywhere Suck at Their Jobs?
Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for FORTUNE
In the age of Lean In and female breadwinners and the polysemy of the work stiletto, we are all thinking a lot about professional women. And professional women are thinking a lot about themselves: In Pacific Standard, Ann Friedman looks at impostor syndrome, the phenomenon by which high-achieving careerists feel unqualified for their jobs, regardless of the positive feedback they earn. Impostorism is “a nervous undercurrent that runs through your day-to-day experience, unacknowledged, only to crop up in salary negotiations or in small phrases like, ‘It might just be me but….’ or ‘Not sure I know what I’m talking about,’ ” Friedman writes. While it is prevalent in women, it occurs in men too, especially minorities who fear they owe their success to affirmative action.
A lot of columnists have taken on impostor syndrome, to the point where a template has emerged. The writer leads with a shocking example (World Health Organization chief Dr. Margaret Chan thinks she’s a fraud! So did Sheryl Sandberg! So do three-quarters of Harvard Business School students!) and then offers up some facts (the informal impostor syndrome diagnosis goes back to a 1978 paper by psychologists Pauline Rose Clance and Suzanne Imes, who observed symptoms in more than 150 lady professionals). Questions are posed: What makes the modern workplace such a confidence desert? Are professional expectations unreasonably high? (“Wanted: a gifted communicator with fresh ideas, a stellar work ethic, mastery of all Microsoft and Internet technologies from 1970 until now, a pleasant demeanor, a proven track record in everything and anything, and no stinky lunches.”) Or do we all just suck at our jobs? Read the rest of this entry »
Check out this fantastic article from the Huffington Post about what inspires girls in in the area of STEM.
The Huffington Post | By Gina Ryder
A question like that brings to mind clichés more fitting at a beauty pageant. Yet when you ask a STEM girl, the responses might well cause you to straighten up and pay attention.
The Huffington Post posed this question to the applicants of our Girls In STEM Mentorship Program. More than 1,000 young women responded to our call-outs last December, and amid all the different names, ages, locations, career motivations and educational backgrounds, we were blown away by the deep purpose each applicant found in her studies and future career.
So in celebration of International Day of the Girl Child and the quest to empower young women everywhere, we’ve compiled some of our favorite responses to this question in the following list. Hopefully they inspire you like they’ve inspired us.
What inspires you? What inspires your pursuit of STEM?
“Seeing my work impact a person’s life, no matter how small the action. I know my thoughts can transform into action.” – Phyllis, 21, Aspiring pharmacist
“I find the the research towards finding an AIDS vaccine fascinating.” - Taryn, 14, Aspiring Orthopaedic/Neurological surgeon
“My whole life, all I ever dreamed about when growing up is to help somebody in a powerful way. I want to make lives better or help move society forward to a future with less misunderstandings and ignorance. Women have been doing this throughout history, and if I could do something just half as good as them, I would be more than satisfied.” – Florencia, 20, Interested in a career in health physics
“It is interesting to learn about how everything comes together to create life and how life is sustained through these processes.” - Danielle, 19, Interested in research and lab work
“Showing a sixth grade girl how to use a dissecting microscope for the first time. Watching her get more excited about wearing gloves and goggles than whatever is in the dish.” - Jane, 21, Aspiring Genetics researcher Read the rest of this entry »
by Elissa Blattman, Project Assistant
In an earlier Foodie Friday post, we explained how 20th Century kitchen appliances and food creations made women’s lives easier. Take a look at this 1955 video entitled, “A Word to the Wives.” In it, two women conceive of a plan to trick one of their husbands into getting a new modern kitchen. What would you do to get the latest modern conveniences?
- Jane is at her new neighbors’ house. The neighbor is ecstatic over her wonderfully modern kitchen. Jane is depressed.
The neighbor tells Jane she should buy a new hat to make herself happier.
- Jane tells the neighbor she cannot go shopping because she does not have a “dream kitchen” and, therefore, does not have time for pleasure. She says she asked her husband, George, multiple times to move to a more modern house but George did not consider it seriously.
- Neighbor says she needs “freedom from the unnecessary drudgery” of cooking and cleaning in an outdated kitchen. She suggests that when Jane goes away for the weekend to visit her mother, she leaves work for George to do himself (i.e. not planning out meals ahead of time for her family). If George has to do the housework himself, he might indeed get Jane the modern conveniences she has been wanting.
- Jane agrees.
- George makes a mess of the stove when trying to cook rice, has no ice cubes for his lemonade, spills garbage all over the floor, has no hot water to do the dishes, and cannot even open his own kitchen cabinet. He gets very frustrated, and ends up yelling at their son and banging on things.
- Jane and George go to neighbor’s house for a dinner party. Neighbor explains to George how helpful having the latest kitchen is and tells him she even had time to play golf before getting everything ready for the party.
- George discusses getting his own modern kitchen with the salesperson who got the neighbors their kitchen (he is also a guest at the dinner party).
- Jane and George move into their own new “dream house.”
- Plot is successful!
By: Katherine Dvorack, NWHM Volunteer
Long before it was the mass marketed, slightly kitschy but always fun holiday we know and love today, Halloween was an ancient Celtic festival to the dead known as Samhain. The most important holiday on the Celtic calendar, Samhain marked the day when the veil between the living and the dead was at its weakest and the souls of those who passed during the year would journey to the underworld. Celebrated with bonfires and crop sacrifices, the festival marked the end of summer and the beginning of a long winter.
As with many pagan holidays, in an effort to convert Celts to Christianity, Samhain was appropriated by the Catholic Church in the early first century A.C.E. and renamed All Saints Day. But despite the Church’s best efforts, many of Samhain’s traditions and rituals remain. While the Church transformed the Celts’ pagan deities into malevolent spirits, people still left offerings for the dead and dressed up to appease the spirits. It was this mixing of beliefs that lead All Saints Day to become All Hallows Eve before finally becoming Halloween. Read the rest of this entry »