Northwestern University

Fri 6:00 PM

NU Graduate Lecture Series: Lecture 2: “Big Little Lies: Women and Work in the 21st Century”

When: Friday, March 2, 2018
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM  

Where: Congdon Schaffer Mansion, 405 Church Street, Evanston, IL 60201

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Amy Danzer   847.491.3051

Group: School of Professional Studies

Category: Academic

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Presented by: Professor Kate Baldwin

Friday, March 2
@ Congdon Shaffer Mansion (405 Church St. - Evanston)
6 p.m. - Program begins
7 p.m. - Reception to follow


Why do highly educated women continue to leave paid employment once they have children? Fortune 1000 companies promote female executive programs, hire consultants with expertise in workplace flexibility, and recruit top female prospects out of business school. Yet, in spite of popular and executive exhortations to “lean in,” women are still leaning out. And although it’s been half a century since Betty Friedan announced the “feminine mystique” enveloping middle-class suburban housewives, 25% of college educated women leave promising careers after having children. Pinpointing contemporary antipathy towards socialized forms of housework and childcare as a refraction of 20th century anti-communism, Baldwin’s talk brings the insights of feminist affect theory to bear on public discourses about gender equality in the workplace and media representations of women and work. Looking at the shift in attitudes of women towards work, from Gen-Xers to millennials, her talk examines behavior modification as a hallmark of liberal feminism transposed into a discourse of affect and orientation. She explores how women over the last decade have understood their choices in terms that have changed from the frustration of the 1990s to the sanguine enthusiasm of the 2010s. In so doing she discusses how high potential, upwardly mobile women have set a course for feminism that seems to exclude or erase the vast majority of U.S. women.


Hosted by Northwestern University's School of Professional Studies
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