This morning on my way to John Carroll, I heard an news story. When applied it to my own profession, more questions than answers were generated. Here’s the NPR story.
More women are acquiring higher honors and education, and even in North America, more women are graduating from universities than men in general. However, there’s evidence to suggest that these honors, education, and accomplishments generate more negative work evaluations from heterosexist male supervisors when they review them. Left unmentioned in the news story is a relevant contrast of a female supervisor evaluating similarly high honored women versus the men of this study. This study comes out of the London Business School.
So the question about the philosophy profession should be put to us. When sexist men are on hiring committees, does a similar effect happen when those men review the credentials of an accomplished female candidate? How about tenure review committees? How about other similarly gender imbalanced humanities subjects? There are lots of questions here.
I will admit ignorance about these scenarios since I am ignorant of what goes on behind closed doors of search committees. I’m still looking to crack that ceiling, but I think the findings of this study could well be tested in various professions, including our own.