The disorienting reality of the coronavirus pandemic has called for leadership and collective strength to help vulnerable citizens navigate this complicated era. WCP's writers decided to wrap this year up by writing a thought piece on women in leadership during this pandemic era. From the fields of politics, business and advocacy, we chose women in leadership who displayed courage, creativity and empathy.
Amidst the turmoil caused by the release of Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)’s shocking report on sexual assault, ANU declared Julie Bishop its first female commissioner. Sophie Dwyer discusses the implications of this announcement, and the varying ways in which it was received.
Despite the fact that a sense of humanity is necessary for good leadership, women continue to be deemed too sensitive for the field of politics. Ingrid Coram discusses how the characteristic of empathy makes women better leaders, not weaker ones.
Emma Watson made headlines for her UN speech calling for greater male involvement in the push for gender equality. 6 years since Emma’s call to arms, men continue to be predominantly on the fringes of the discussion and policy formation. Trent Severin explores how concerns about the impact of measures or policies on their lives, confusion and misinformation all form the foundational barriers to not only a lack of support, but also potential backlash hindering progress that could otherwise be made.
Is a “Work-life Balance” Something That All Women Should Continue Striving For?
This article puts into question the accuracy of the term “work-life balance” that women constantly face, especially if they have (or want to have) a successful career and/or children. It draws a comparison between what is expected of women and men and their life ambitions. Lastly, it gives the reader an opportunity to think of this “balance” in another light.
In the past, women in politics have struggled to have their contributions
recognised, their ideas deemed radical and unfit for a discourse created by men. Even if a nation appointed a woman to a significant political position, she had to battle the patriarchal hegemonies that benefitted her privileged male counterparts. However, women have refused to let male policymakers squeeze them out of the decision-making processes. Using the
experiences of three female leaders, Meera Sivasubramanian analyses how women in power have dismantled the systematic oppression that a male-centric political system has exercised towards them.
Being an ‘Only’: Reflections on Being a Woman of Colour in the Workplace
Being the only, or one of the only, women of colour in a workplace is a common experience for many. Experiences of being an ‘Only’ are wide and varied; however, the literature on the topic often focuses on the negatives associated with an Only status. Shashi Rajendra reflects on her own experience as an Only, including some of the surprising advantages this status provided her.
Why Is the Gender Pay Gap Still So Significant an Issue?
The gender pay gap has been a significant issue for many years. Despite the fact that it has been acknowledged by many, and even called to attention by notable celebrities, the pay gap is still prominent around the world. While this is partly due to outdated traditions and beliefs, there are other factors complicating the eradication of the gap. In an evolving society where women are increasingly independent and self-reliant, the issue of the pay gap arguably poses a larger threat than it did decades ago. Anushka Shah explores its sources.
The term ‘Queen Bee’ is not an uncommon term, as it is used in contexts varying from high school cliques to workplaces. At work, both men and women use the term to describe women in higher-ranking positions. Interestingly enough, studies show that this is not simply due to a personality trait shared by all female bosses, but is instead a coping mechanism in response to the struggles they face in the workplace. Anushka Shah details some of the challenges faced by women in leadership roles.
The advent of feminism as a mainstream concept has brands scrambling to put out ‘woke’ items. As a result, feminism is now more than just a movement – it’s a trend. But when corporations exploit and co-opt feminist discourse for the sake of a brief slogan emblazoned on a (likely unethically produced) shirt, whose aims are really being served? Angela Le explores the ways in which the commodification of feminism may undermine its basic underlying goals.
Feminism is quite the buzzword nowadays, but it can mean very different things to very different people. Within the broader feminist movement there lie many definitions of the word, some at odds with others. Last semester, we asked a group of our writers to each describe their own conception of feminism. Here’s what they had to say: