Employment and gender roles

The Man

Former Staff
Jul 2011
46,997
34,450
Toronto
#1
I guess I'll put this here, not sure where else it fits on the site' though this isn't really a "civil rights" issue per se (I am not sure it is even an actual ISSUE; more like a curious observation of mine lol)

Just, comparing the work-related gender norms in mainstream Canadian culture and my own Russian-speaking community.

I've been looking at job ads on Russian/ex-Soviet diaspora sites here in Toronto area.

Here is a sample for you, two recent ads, one looking for house cleaners; other - a person do basic repair and maintenance on trucks for a trucking company

First ad specifically asks for "honest, hardworking and responsible WOMEN"; second one wants an "experienced MAN".

I have previously noticed especially in ads for cleaners and such, in Russian language media, it is usually openly specified they are looking for females. While, OTOH, ads for tradespeople, such as carpenters, plumbers, masons, mechanics, whatever, usually just as openly say "men". And even where gender isn't thusly specified; most nouns in Russian language have gendered endings indicating the one preferred. The ads for construction and trades jobs pretty much always have male endings, period.

This is engraved, kinda, in our culture, I think.

In schools back in Russia (and other ex-Soviet republics too; though, I hear, Ukraine has been de-gendering its education system lately, trying to become like Europe lol) there are shop classes for boys and girls, only, the boys learn actual trades in their classes


while the girls learn how to make them (boys) sandwiches


lol

Only real "trade" the girls there learn at school, is sewing


As a result, it is entrenched in the consciousness of people there, that carpentry, masonry, etc, are MEN'S WORK. While sewing or cleaning, or even cooking, for the most part, is for women. There are some famous male chefs over there, sure. But they are rich and famous and have their own upscale restaurants and serve oligarchs and government bigwigs and such. So, they can do what they want. A regular man in Russia, if he comes to his regular job, and tells his colleagues that he cooked his own breakfast that day, he will be mocked "What is your wife for then???" :rolleyes:

Same with cleaning...

Even for me, I recall, it was very strange, when I started high school here in Canada, and encountered our school's (male) janitor for first time. A man who does cleaning for a living??? What??? lmao

Canadians are much more egalitarian on these things, it seems :)

And not only the white ones, like that janitor. Later, at one of my security jobs back in Vancouver, where I patrolled an office/factory building, janitor there was a man also, Sri Lankan guy, I believe. Sometimes his wife also came and worked together with him.

I believe our community is one of the few still clinging to these archaic gender norms, honestly... It's sad :(
 

Blueneck

Former Staff
Jun 2007
55,137
42,571
Ohio
#2
As a former machinist, I can attest to the ingrained sexism in traditionally male occupations. People just assume women are hardwired for certain things, as are men. I once had a guy I knew who was a foreman on a crew that laid fiber optic cable underground tell me he liked to hire women as heavy machine operators because they were more tuned in to the feel of the machines they operated & less likely to screw shit up because they weren't always trying to muscle through obstacles.

So much for traditional thinking. Slowly but surely it will change as more and more men and women adopt careers outside of the norm.
 

boontito

Future Staff
Jan 2008
107,541
98,952
Most Insidious
#3
One thing I have noticed being more accepted and acknowledged in recent years is the increased productivity and efficiency from a diverse work group. Building a team with a variety of skills, backgrounds and insights demands a bit more from the supervisor but usually pays off in efficiency.
 

StanStill

Former Staff
Dec 2013
13,217
15,036
Work
#4
As a former machinist, I can attest to the ingrained sexism in traditionally male occupations. People just assume women are hardwired for certain things, as are men. I once had a guy I knew who was a foreman on a crew that laid fiber optic cable underground tell me he liked to hire women as heavy machine operators because they were more tuned in to the feel of the machines they operated & less likely to screw shit up because they weren't always trying to muscle through obstacles.

So much for traditional thinking. Slowly but surely it will change as more and more men and women adopt careers outside of the norm.
The thing is, I think the foreman was onto something. Seems a fairly reasonable that men would have more of a tendency to get frustrated using a backhoe or something else and "over muscle" the problem when patience and a steady hand would be more effective. Testosterone might make men want to do physical things, but once the necessity for actual muscle is removed, that same testosterone could actually hinder performance.
 

The Man

Former Staff
Jul 2011
46,997
34,450
Toronto
#5
I will say one thing, as someone in a management position now. Judging employees (or anyone else around you, really) based on any group characteristics, be it gender, race/ethnicity, religion, etc, etc, is not only harmful and often bigoted; but unproductive and generally a waste of time.

Very few people out there can be easily fit into broad stereotypes. Men are NOT automatically stronger than women. I have a wonderful lady in my company, who has taken up without complaint, brutal 12 hour night-shifts on far away sites, two or even three hour drive from her home; which plenty of male employees were whining to me about.

Everyone is an individual. Everyone is their own person. You make yourself who you are, not your genitals, your skin, or even, really, your genes (otherwise, for instance, any child of a serial killer would automatically themselves become murderers when grow up, which hasn't really happened, has it?)

Individual merit is the only way IMHO
 

Blueneck

Former Staff
Jun 2007
55,137
42,571
Ohio
#6
I will say one thing, as someone in a management position now. Judging employees (or anyone else around you, really) based on any group characteristics, be it gender, race/ethnicity, religion, etc, etc, is not only harmful and often bigoted; but unproductive and generally a waste of time.

Very few people out there can be easily fit into broad stereotypes. Men are NOT automatically stronger than women. I have a wonderful lady in my company, who has taken up without complaint, brutal 12 hour night-shifts on far away sites, two or even three hour drive from her home; which plenty of male employees were whining to me about.

Everyone is an individual. Everyone is their own person. You make yourself who you are, not your genitals, your skin, or even, really, your genes (otherwise, for instance, any child of a serial killer would automatically themselves become murderers when grow up, which hasn't really happened, has it?)

Individual merit is the only way IMHO
You would be surprised how many small businesses don't hire women in an all male environment because they don't want the men to get upset over it.
 
Mar 2019
3,120
1,764
In Sunday School with Hognoxious
#7
People who are in traditional gender roles seem to be happier in marriage. If that gets flipped, seems like there is less happiness in the marriage. Said by a female doctor that told me this. She quit her job to raise 4 kids.
Gains in women’s rights haven't made women happier. Why is that?
Also women are less happy than they were in the early 1970's. It's probably because most women desire to have children and they desire to raise children. The feminism, progressivism and women's rights movement told women that they need a career, that they don't need a man, and even some like the climate change movement have told women that they should not have children. It's all a lie and these progressive ideas have not brought more happiness to women. Women have become less happy than they were 50 years ago when there was more traditional gender roles.
 
Last edited:
Likes: The Man
Nov 2016
8,573
8,328
USA
#8
People who are in traditional gender roles seem to be happier in marriage. If that gets flipped, seems like there is less happiness in the marriage. Said by a female doctor that told me this. She quit her job to raise 4 kids.
That may have been the right choice for her, but it isn’t for everyone.

I majored in chemistry in college and worked in medical research labs. I’ve been happily married for 45 years. No kids, not by choice. Unhappiness stemmed from the sexism in scientific research, where women were treated like peons, given the worst assignments, given all the shit work, and not mentored by senior researchers the way men were.

I finally made a career change to desk (administrative) work where I could use my scientific background, and worked there for many years and advanced as far as my talents could take me. I got as far as I could go without going into management, which I believed I was not suited for. I stayed until I retired.

My mother was fired from her job when she got pregnant with me, and became a stay at home mom, eventually to six of us. She took good care of us, but I think she would have been happier if she had worked part time.
 
Mar 2019
3,120
1,764
In Sunday School with Hognoxious
#9
That may have been the right choice for her, but it isn’t for everyone.

I majored in chemistry in college and worked in medical research labs. I’ve been happily married for 45 years. No kids, not by choice. Unhappiness stemmed from the sexism in scientific research, where women were treated like peons, given the worst assignments, given all the shit work, and not mentored by senior researchers the way men were.

I finally made a career change to desk (administrative) work where I could use my scientific background, and worked there for many years and advanced as far as my talents could take me. I got as far as I could go without going into management, which I believed I was not suited for. I stayed until I retired.

My mother was fired from her job when she got pregnant with me, and became a stay at home mom, eventually to six of us. She took good care of us, but I think she would have been happier if she had worked part time.
I'm sorry you went through that @birdzeyez
 
Jan 2016
57,336
54,126
Colorado
#10
That may have been the right choice for her, but it isn’t for everyone.

I majored in chemistry in college and worked in medical research labs. I’ve been happily married for 45 years. No kids, not by choice. Unhappiness stemmed from the sexism in scientific research, where women were treated like peons, given the worst assignments, given all the shit work, and not mentored by senior researchers the way men were.

I finally made a career change to desk (administrative) work where I could use my scientific background, and worked there for many years and advanced as far as my talents could take me. I got as far as I could go without going into management, which I believed I was not suited for. I stayed until I retired.

My mother was fired from her job when she got pregnant with me, and became a stay at home mom, eventually to six of us. She took good care of us, but I think she would have been happier if she had worked part time.
Women face a lot of prejudice in the STEM fields. One of the most pernicious myths is the age-old notion that men are just naturally 'better' at mathematics than women are.

Well. I taught high-level mathematics over the last 25 years of my career, to a very wide variety of students, including many foreign exchange students, by the way.

I would say that of my 20 best math students I had in ALL those years, 13 of them were female.

Of my TEN best students, 7 of them were female.

Of my FIVE best students, 3 of them were female.

And the two very best students I ever taught were both female. The best was (and is) also a linguistics genius, and can now speak probably some 20 languages, earned degrees in both mathematics and languages from the University of Chicago, and was considered by the National Security Agency for a high-level classified position. Heh. A DOD investigator came out and interviewed me one day, doing a background check on her. Weird questions. "Has she ever expressed any sympathies for any terrorist organizations?"

Me: "Uh, no."
 
Likes: The Man

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