Gender and Leadership

Week 2 Gender and Leadership


Hour 1–3 - The Implicit Bias Test

Sunday / 5:47 / My room

I do consider myself to be someone who believes in equal rights for women. But while reflecting on the “implicit bias” module of the reading I felt as though i uncovered some internal bias.

The first question posed by the article was whether a woman could face the same problems as Agamemnon in the Iliad. To this I think that women can definitely face the issue of people not supporting their claim to power. Hilary Clinton for example i believe faced a similar struggle as Agamemnon and Achilles in the last American election against Donald Trump. Despite her claim to fame, experience and political alliances, Donald Trump was able to capture the hearts of the American people. Although difficult to admit like Achilles, Trump was able to inspire new voters much like Achilles inspired the troops. Additionally both persons seemed to actively seek a solution to the plague. Similarly Clinton falls into the Agamemnon category where her desires seem all too personal.

Secondly the reading asked for internal reflection as to whether a person can detect their own bias’. Making reference to the Implicit Association Test. I believe that I have some tenancies to assume the role of leader is a male’s job. Especially because of the culture of where I was raised. Being from the Caribbean it is definitely normal to regard a man as the assumed leader and the woman as subordinate. However, I believe that certain exaggerated stereotypes have eluded me because the content i have been exposed to. By doing lots of reading I believe I was exposed to strong female characters both fictional and historic. This has definitely improved my view on women in leadership positions.

Hour 4–5: Gender and Leadership: A comparison of Module 1 and 2

Tuesday / 9:40 / In Class

There are several ways in which we can compare the roles of Leaders between the two modules that we have covered in class. However we had decided to narrow it down to five components. These are time, culture, genre,theme and political organization.

  1. Time Period

YCGYOW - 1100 BCE, composed in 650 BCE

IKWBL- Late Roman Republic 47–30 BCE

The first is time period. Both the Iliad was composed in 650 BCE, but takes placed in a fictional 1100 BCE. It is a good representation of the roles of different male leaders. This is especially true of Agamemnon and Achilles. Whereas Anthony and Cleopatra is a historical account taking place from 47–30 BCE. This module better gives us readers an example of the role that women played in leadership at the time.

2. Culture

YCGYOW — Heroic, Greek

IKWBL — Rome, Eygpt

Another difference in the two modules is with the culture. The Iliad being Greek culture based on a fictional Heroic styled story. Whereas “the Life of Plutarch” we get a glimpse into both Roman and Egyptian cultures.

3. Genre

YCGYOW — Epic, fiction, Homer Iliad

IKWBL — Plutarch, biography, non-fiction

The Iliad is in fact fiction, a story set in 1100 BCE. It is however important to note that when composed in 650 BCE, listeners regarded the story as true historic events. The Iliad is a epic story that composes many characters: from gods to servants each playing a role that affects the story. Whereas Plutarch’s Life of Antony presents the reader with a portrait of a leader from the perspectives of family lineage, natural character, upbringing, education, and life experiences that are often tragic, wondrous, or bizarre. The purpose, as Plutarch explains, is to give the reader a sense of who the leader is.

4. Themes

YCGYOW — Problem, Conflict of Leaders

IKWBL — Gender

In the Iliad both women taken by Agamemnon and Achilles seemed more like objects rather than people. They were definitely victims of dehumanization. However, Cleopatra is completely different. She shows several great attributes of a great leader.Antony was considered a Phihllene — someone who loves Greek culture. Antony was referred to as this because of his interest in philosophy and other things that make him.

5. Political Organization

YCGYOW — loose confederacy of Kings

IKWBL — republican government (senate, assembly, 2 consuls)

The Political organization of The Iliad was that of a loose confederacy of Kings. Agamemnon was the leader due to the fact that he had the largest army. Whereas Roman political organization system was based on the Republican government that existed before the Roman Empirical system.

Hour 6–7: How do men and Women lead?

Wednesday/ 4:00/ Blackburn Cafe

Should males and female lead the same way?

Males in positions of power have are more promiscuous / tend to have more children. I a book written by Arnold Ludwig called Kings of the Mountain looks at male leaders in the 20th century. Less than 1% of leaders in the globe are women. And when they are women it seems that women are descendants of leaders. He argues that the competency is there but just women do not want the role. His data looks at leaders from the 20th century onward and utilizes information from theories relating to primates. Hypothesis “ It doesn't benefit a woman (female Primate to have multiple sex partners in the same way that it would benefit a man”

“A Billion Wicked Thoughts” looks at the statistics of pornography. Argues that women are attracted to power.

A classmate suggested that equality for men and women is typically viewed as women conducting the same role as men but preferably in the same way as men. However, she argued that this view is skewed against women and should be reinterpreted as women being able to carryout tasks in ways that may be different to a man but ultimately just as effective.

Hour 8: The Sovereignty of Woman

Wednesday / 6:30pm/ Library

On April 18th, 2016, Jill Lepore wrote an article for the New Yorker. She began “In less than a year, the us will elect their first female president” She goes on to say that “If the delegate leads of the front-runners hold, if their Conventions don’t unseat them, and if the latest polls are to be believed, Hillary Clinton will face Donald Trump in November, and she will defeat him.” Unfortunately, Jill Lepore’s prediction is so far from the truth. Last week Donald Trump was inaugurated as the 45th American President. Just a day before Millions of women in Washington D.C. and across the country and globe marched on Washington to advocate for women’s rights. Many of the posters that were seen had anti-trump sentiments. “Woman is man’s equal,” the first women’s-rights convention resolved, in 1848. However, this election has proved that this may not be the belief held by many. I intend to look into research that contrasts the expectation of leading between Hilary Clinton and the now 45th President of the United States Donald Trump.

Hour 9: The Man card Vs the Woman card

Wednesday / 7:30pm/ Library

“What more people probably have in their mind is a woman candidate relying on her sex as sort of a major criteria on which we should support her,” said Kathy Dolan, a political science professor at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. “I think some people might be trying to suggest that she’s trying to do something that’s politically correct or trying to bully people into being politically correct and voting for her because she’d be the first woman.”

This is what Trump means when he says Clinton wouldn’t even be in the race if it weren’t for her gender — that her gender has given her a leg up in what would otherwise be a résumé of someone who is unqualified. This is bound to rub some women the wrong way. — The Vox Magazine,

In a strange turn of events during the campaign season, Trump had the audacity of saying that Hilary played her ‘woman card’ That her only claim to running was the potential for her to be elected as the first female President and as such he, Trump, was in fact the one who was at a dis advantage. Some however argue that Trump is in fact playing the man card. He by virtue of his gender has not faced the same levels of criticism for issues in his personal life that a woman would find tremendously difficult to answer. Just things like him having gone through 3 marriages and fathering five children or his demeanor or ‘locker room talk’ when he describes women. Trump can get away with being heavily emotional whereas his female opponent was expected to be poised and controlled.

Hour 10:

I conclude by thinking that gender norms are typically much easier for people to believe and follow and many times this is to the discredit of women. Trumps election has shown us this where the protests had more people in attendance than his inauguration. He has not even made an attempt to respond to any of the words and actions that he has taken that are blatantly disrespecting women. I believe that society still has quite some ways to go in defeating gender norms.

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