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Still a Mans World, Book Review Example

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Book Review

In the book ” Still a Mans World” written by Christine Williams, she examines men who work in female dominated jobs. In particular she looks at Nursing, Librarians, Hairdressers and Babysitting. ” Most men usually avoid women’s work because it is so boring ” (Williams).   Statistics illustrate that not many men do work in these occupations but the trend is changing.  The following statistics are cited by Williams:  6% of all Registered Nurses are male, 15% of School Teachers, 17% of Librarians and 32% of social workers.  In 1990 it was stated that over 500,000 men were employed in these occupations. Williams discovered that most men in these occupations held traditional male viewpoints.  Thus they experience what she terms as “the glass escalator effect”, as opposed to being bettered by the other women in similar jobs they tend to rise to administrative capacities.

Male nurses enter a minority profession but most men have good reasons for doing so. A large proportion of them already have some medical background and many wish to specialise in certain aspects of medicine.  In this sense they are often highly motivated. This helps them to re-orient themselves in a female dominated society  and adapt for what to them is a real career choice, this overcoming informal barriers of social control.

With regard to Male Librarians they faced the stereotyping of being “gay”.  This similarly applied to Male Hairdressers.  A survey conducted by Carmichael in 1982 indicated that 82% of those interviewed formed this stereotype opinion.

Oddly enough the survey went on to state that the actual projected number of gay people working as librarians was in the same proportion to the number of gay people in American Society.   Carmichael discovered that most males becoming Librarians did so because of their passion for books and learning, in addition the belief in the library system.  Some of those interviewed expressed the more serious concern of sex discrimination in the workplace. It was stated that female administrators readily found fault with them but would not take sides against another woman.

Most Male Hairdressers feel they suffer from stereotyping and the image of being gay.  This image is more intensified with women stylists than the traditional barber or men’s hairdresser.  Much of the judgement come from women who associate the male obsession with grooming as a female trait and therefore those male stylists mostly fall into the “gay camp”.

Babysitters of the male variety unfortunately enter a dangerous territory of caution and fear from the mother.  The terrible media stories of paedophiles gives every mother a potential scare in the thought of adopting male babysitters.  Where some of these fears may be irrational, nevertheless maternal instincts of the female or mother protector of the baby are hard to replace. It therefore stands to reason that the Mother would prefer to deal with a female babysitter.  It would be interesting to see statistics in this subject area.  It is very interesting to read the many blogs placed on the internet in this subject area.  This is about as close to the “grass roots” as you can get.  A lot of fathers have voiced opinions and concerns about the mothers introducing male babysitters, so this concern is not purely female oriented.  The best advice being if you are uncomfortable with this concept, then simply don’t do it.

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