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"For Girls" Construction Set Exhibits Progressive Hypocrisy

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"For Girls" Construction Set Exhibits Progressive Hypocrisy:

 

thenewversailles.wordpress.com/2014/05/02/for-girls-construction-toy-exhibits-progressive-hypocrisy/

 

A “for girls” construction set claiming to promote gender equality is receiving significant fanfare throughout progressive social media. Fresh from a much-hyped kickstarter campaign is GoldieBlox, a toy brand created by Stanford engineer Debbie Sterling to “level the playing field” for women in the sciences. Notwithstanding the widely reported fact that women earn more advanced degrees than men, Sterling is disheartened more women aren’t choosing the right kinds of advanced degrees in fields like engineering, her own career choice.

 

GoldieBlox commits for women the same progressive disservice as affirmative action commits for ethnic minorities - pushing elitist control and paternalism under the guise of empowerment. In reality, all this protectionist messaging achieves is lower self-esteem and perpetuating collectivist divisiveness and resentment.

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I don't follow your conclusion here. :huh: I do agree the product is hypocritical, but I just blame its name,color scheme and the notion that a product itself has to be made differently to cater to females for being stereotypical in a product that is supposed to be aiming to break down stereotypes. I don't see the elitist control thing. Pretty sure the message isn't supposed to be though that engineering and such are the only acceptable fields for girls to follow (any more than engineering and such are the only acceptable fields for males) but rather that there may be some females who are in other fields instead of this one primarily because they received discouragement against following this career path (or just little or no encouragement while other more stereotypically female oriented jobs got more encouragement)  and that engineering and such really are a proper option for females as much as any other more stereotypical job for them.

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On the one hand, the irony is pretty funny. That is, it wants to encourage girls to go into science... by emphasizing stupid stereotypes like pink, ribbons, "cute" things, and marketing it to girls specifically?

At the same time, you overlook that in fact stereotypes that exist and have a notable impact on career to the extent it affect's a child's self-esteem. There is psychology research done on stereotypes shows how a presence of stereotypes in that they are social norms impacts thinking. Seriously, it's utterly pervasive that girls are seen as more "emotional" and not as into rational thought, even if you know it's false. Many people think it is true. I don't see how you draw out that anyone thinks there is a corporatist agenda, or even the point of this is to fight against "male oppression". It's just fighting stupid stereotypes, albeit badly.

"Instead, the dubious distinction of GoldieBlox is its explicit messaging that girls are making the wrong choices, and the way it robs them of agency by prescribing what their correct choices should be. "

Where on the GoldieBlox site does it say either girls are making wrong choices, and how does it rob agency to market any item girls? And secondly, where does anyone say girls are making wrong choices in terms of toys or education?

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I don't follow your conclusion here. :huh: I do agree the product is hypocritical, but I just blame its name,color scheme and the notion that a product itself has to be made differently to cater to females for being stereotypical in a product that is supposed to be aiming to break down stereotypes.

And I agree with your disagreement, but disagree with your agreement:)

You're right that the stereotype that women shouldn't/can't be engineers or other male dominated occupations (with the exception of a few that require great physical strength) is a problem. I agree with that part, and any campaign that tries to dispel it is welcome.

I disagree that there's a contradiction between that and using a feminine color scheme when doing it. There is nothing wrong with women engineers staying feminine. There's also nothing wrong with women who prefer masculine colors, or aren't cutesy, etc., but the fact is that that's not who most girls and women are. And an ad like this should cater to those girls who do in fact want to be feminine, and embrace their gender, and tell THEM that they can stay who they are and go into an occupation that's stereotyped as male, at the same time.

Gender isn't a stereotype. Women preferring certain colors isn't a stereotype, it's a valid feminine aesthetic. Women who choose feminine color schemes, act a certain way, etc., etc. have a legitimate reason to do so, and calling that a stereotype is just as insulting to them as calling a girl who doesn't make those choices "butch" or a "tomboy" (I guess the second isn't necessarily insulting, but it sure can be if delivered in a judgmental tone).

Edited by Nicky
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Bluecherry - The control angle is implicit in the form of the message. There is a world of difference between "whatever you choose is OK" and "I'm telling you it's good for you to be an engineer."

Eioul - I don't think you can find a serious psychologist who believes men are emotionally identical to women. I certainly don't believe that's true. I mean, there are real brain and hormonal differences between the sexes. When men or women abuse testosterone or estrogen, their emotions change - that's not imaginary or cultural.

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I mean, there are real brain and hormonal differences between the sexes. When men or women abuse testosterone or estrogen, their emotions change - that's not imaginary or cultural.

Oh, I wasn't claiming there are no differences at all, I was claiming that there is a stereotype that women are overly-emotional and think with their emotions. That stereotype has strong influence.

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Not sure about overly emotional. That's relative to the situation, I suppose. Women cry a lot more than men, but sometimes crying is appropriate. I think the last time I cried was when my guinea pig died when I was 8. My wife last cried this morning because she was hungry and worried about getting to work on time.

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