Sunday, February 27, 2005

Is it possible to be a mother and have a career?

I'm reading my history articles today about the pioneering women in journalism in the early 1900s and what they endured to become professional journalists. When you read history, there is a tendency to hope that life has progressed since then--hopefully for the better--but I find myself reading these articles and thinking that it could describe my life today.

Here are a couple of quotes to ponder:
"There was no clear ground on which to make it as a women and make it in a man's world."

"Women who wanted to succeed in the male professional world had to leave their feminine selves behind."

Funny, but I have felt like this all of my professional life. I have always felt like I had to peddle faster, work longer hours, and make sure to have that perfect Talbot's look.

Now, in this enlightened age where most of my entering class is women, there is a new distinction: motherhood. Instead of feeling like "one of the group", there are always comments about "the children", as if my abilities are tainted rather than enriched by two wonderful little beings.

What does this say about feminism? Maybe, as one final quote offered, "professional women's individualism extracted a price as they lost their sense of community."


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