Summary of “I Want My 2.3 Bonus Years”

If there is any truth to her claim, maybe it’s because men know they can settle down at a later age.
A study that tracked 8,559 pregnancies found that “Conception during a 12-month period was 30 percent less likely for men over age 40 years as compared with men younger than age 30 years.”
In other words, all that data we have about how women in their late 30s are struggling to get pregnant doesn’t take into consideration the fact that many of those women are trying to conceive with men who are in their 40s. Men are much less fooled when it comes to that second belief – that they could get a younger woman if they wanted to.
The dating site’s researchers found that most conversations take place between an older man and a younger woman and in almost half of them, the age gap is at least five years.
Men might still be mistaken about just how much younger their next partner could be.
When New York magazine looked at the careers of 10 leading men, it found that as they aged, their onscreen love interests didn’t.
We are socialized into thinking that men are like wine, they get better with time.
I hereby swear that I will not take an eligible older man out of the dating pool – to do so would be to slap future-me in the face but it would also signal to men my age that it’s O.K., you have time.

The orginal article.

Summary of “West Africa’s Most Daring Designer”

A few days before the weekend began, Amaka Osakwe, the designer of the fashion line Maki Oh, welcomed a private client into her atelier, in a serene enclave on the island filled with walled mansions and cultivated greenery.
In the past seven years, Osakwe has become West Africa’s most celebrated designer, with work exhibited in the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, in New York; the Vitra Design Museum, in Germany; and the Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, in England.
Amina Mama, a women’s-studies professor at the University of California, Davis, said, “When it comes to sexual freedoms, our society is rushing backward to a colonial, missionary idea. It’s almost as if they are overreacting to progress in women’s rights.” Osakwe’s clothes, for clients who can afford them, are both armor and lingerie: intimidating but inviting, with unyielding lines and delicate materials.
In high school, Osakwe took advanced courses in economics and sociology, but eventually told her family that she wanted to be a designer.
Osakwe’s typical clients, according to one Nigerian retail expert, are “Sophisticated, edgy, very well-travelled” women, who “Want something that is super new in terms of interpretation but has a sentimental place in history that they can connect to.” They mostly range in age from their late thirties to their fifties; Osakwe explained that they appreciate the adire, and they have the buying power.
“What is seduction to her? It’s not a pretty journey,” Osakwe said.
Osakwe seems to have little gift for marketing or networking.
A few minutes later, Osakwe ran into Kessiana Edewor-Thorley, who works in public relations; her mother is an interior designer and her late stepfather was a prominent lawyer.

The orginal article.

Summary of “In Angela Merkel, German Women Find Symbol, but Not Savior”

There are more C.E.O.s named “Thomas” than C.E.O.s who are women in Germany’s 160 publicly traded companies, notes the AllBright foundation, which tracks women in corporate leadership.
From child care to corporate governance, have changed for women under Ms. Merkel’s watch.
So deep remains the cultural bias against working women, and especially working mothers, that some young commentators now mention Germany’s “Gender issue” in the same breath as America’s “Race issue” – a piece of historic baggage that has never been fully addressed, elusive and omnipresent at the same time, a sort of national elephant in the room.
“If you work and have children, you are a raven mother. If you work and have no children, you’re a cold woman. All paths for women in Germany are difficult. Here, Merkel has not helped.”
She made her career in American companies instead, rising through the ranks of General Electric’s German operation before being hired by SAP, a company that is considered unusually progressive for having two women among its eight executive board members.
“Angela Merkel considers things normal that many women who grew up in West Germany consider anything but normal,” said Jutta Allmendinger, a leading German sociologist and president of the WZB Berlin Social Science Center.
Women in Germany are still paid 21 percent less than men – the European average is 16 percent – not least because they do not climb the career ladder.
Among the publicly traded businesses in Germany’s internationally revered Mittelstand, the midsize companies that are the backbone of Germany’s well-oiled export machine, fewer than 4 percent of executive jobs are held by women.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Male brain vs female brain: Is there a difference?”

Her research led her to an experiment by a professor at the University of Maryland that demonstrated how characteristics of certain neurons in animal brains could change from male to female, or vice versa, when exposed to a stressor for 15 minutes.
“I realized that if certain areas of the brain could change from the typical ‘female form’ to the typical ‘male form’ under stress, there was no point in talking about the female brain and the male brain,” Joel told Haaretz.
Sax’s guide, she says, presents as fact the idea that “Hardwired sex differences in the brain mean that girls and boys should be parented and educated differently.” Fine had studied brain structure during her PhD work at Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London, so she looked into the studies Sax cited.
Rippon and others have called also attention to brain plasticity, which complicates evidence from brain imaging tests since men and women are both saddled with gender expectations from the time of infancy, and develop skills and behavioral tendencies accordingly.
These learned behaviors could be responsible for literally changing the shape of certain structures in one’s brain, in the same way that memorizing London’s streets alters the physical structure of cabbies’ hippocampus, the area of the brain associated with memory.
Where there are plenty of studies that show sex hormones affect the brain, and that there are some group-level differences between male and female brains-for example, on average, women have more gray matter then men-what’s not proven, according to Joel, “Is that these effects add up to create two types of brains: male and female.”
By contrast, he tells Quartz, his work for the last 17 years has been focused on defining sex differences in the brain -which he says exist on every level and vary in size- because neuroscience had been treating male and female brains as if they were the same.
In her new book about women in science, British journalist Angela Saini speaks to Paul Matthews, a neuroscientist at Imperial College London who agrees with Joel and others, saying, “There’s a lot of variability in individual brains. In fact, the anatomical variability is much greater than we ever realized before. So the notion that all people of the male sex have a brain that has fixed characteristics that are invariant seems less likely to me. In fact, so much less likely that I think the notion of trying to characterize parts of the brain as more male-like or more female-like actually isn’t useful.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Rebecca Solnit: if I were a man”

Back in the 1970s, when some men were figuring out how their own liberation might parallel women’s liberation, there was a demonstration at which guys held a banner that said, “Men are more than just success objects.” Perhaps as a girl, I was liberated by expectations that I’d be some variation on a failure.
Success can contain implicit failure for straight women, who are supposed to succeed as women by making men feel godlike in their might.
As Virginia Woolf reflected: “Women have served all these centuries as looking glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size.”
I have met a lot of brilliant men whose spouses serve their careers and live in their shadows, and marrying a successful man is still considered the pinnacle of women’s achievement in many circles.
One often hears statements implying that it’s generous of a man to put up with a woman’s brilliance or success, though more and more straight couples are negotiating this as more women become principal breadwinners or higher earners.
I’ve been insulted, threatened, spat on, attacked, groped, harassed, followed; women I know have been stalked so ferociously they had to go into hiding, sometimes for years; other women I know have been kidnapped, raped, tortured, stabbed, beaten with rocks, left for dead. It impacts on your sense of freedom to say the least.
Who we are, I realised as I co-created an atlas of New York City, is even built into the landscape, in which many things are named after men, few after women, from streets and buildings – Lafayette Street, Madison Avenue, Lincoln Center, Rockefeller Center – to boroughs – nearby Paterson, Levittown, Morristown.
There are more subtle advantages about the range of expression I’m allowed in my personal relations, including in my close, supportive, emotionally expressive friendships with other women – and, through all my adult life, my friendships with gay men, many of whom who have boldly, festively, brilliantly broken the rules of masculinity and helped me laugh at the gaps between who we are and who we’re supposed to be.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Ellen Pao: This Is How Sexism Works in Silicon Valley”

I had been working for six years at the Silicon Valley firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers as a junior partner and chief of staff for managing partner John Doerr.
A person might offer to vote in favor of investing in another partner’s investment so that partner will support his upcoming investment.
As a junior partner you faced another dilemma: Your investments could be poached by senior partners.
Women were admonished when they “Raised their voices” yet chastised when they couldn’t “Own the room.” When I was still relatively new, a male partner made a big show of passing a plate of cookies around the table – but curiously ignored me and the woman next to him.
One CEO I had been working with, Mike McCue, called me to relate how John and another managing partner, Bing Gordon, had met with him and asked to invest more money in his start-up Flipboard.
One partner told me that when she happily announced her third pregnancy, a male senior partner responded, “I don’t know any professional working woman who has three kids.”
Juliet de Baubigny, one of the partners who had helped recruit me, had warned me that taking time off would put my companies at risk of being commandeered by another partner.
Kleiner’s managing partners flouted hiring rules, too, asking inappropriate questions in interviews like: Are you married? Do you have kids? How old are you? Are you thinking about having kids? What does your husband do? What did your ex-husband do? It was noted at some point that such questions created a giant legal risk, and the response was, effectively, Well, who’s going to sue us?

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Maddeningly Simple Way Tech Companies Can Employ More Women”

He tells us he’ll have a booth at the Grace Hopper conference, the largest annual gathering of women in tech.
Will women have any input in the hiring process? Will the interview panels be diverse? Will current female employees be available to speak to candidates about their experiences? Many times, the answer to each of these questions is no, and the resistance to make simple changes in these areas is striking.
I remind them that when it comes to gender, they have to play catch-up, after long histories of eroding trust by grilling women about how they’ll be able to do the job with children at home and years of negative stories in the press with tales of how women are mistreated at tech companies.
Silicon Valley companies are in love with themselves and don’t understand why the love isn’t always returned by the few women to whom they extend employment offers.
That’s why they’re so proud of so-called boomerangs – candidates who have left a company for reasons that may or may not be related to how it treats women and, after advancing their careers elsewhere, return.
They want to know, what policies have changed for us? Is the environment more inclusive? Can I have a family without compromising my career? When tech firms in Silicon Valley and beyond decide to proactively answer those questions as part of their regular processes, they have a chance to successfully recruit and hire more women.
The company realized it needed to take extra time to convince women that it truly valued them.
The women hired through that effort are all still at the company.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Motherhood Isn’t Sacrifice, It’s Selfishness”

One male character declares that the woman must “Learn in silence with all subjection” and that “She shall be saved by childbearing.” In this scenario, the act of motherhood is subverted for the benefit of those in power, and they get away with it because of the concept of motherhood as sacrifice.
Motherhood is not a sacrifice, but a privilege – one that many of us choose selfishly.
By reframing motherhood as a privilege, we redirect agency back to the mother, empowering her, celebrating her autonomy instead of her sacrifice.
There are many mothers who would not have chosen motherhood, for financial or personal reasons.
Calling motherhood “The hardest job in the world” misses the point completely because having and raising children is not a “Job.” No one will deny that there is exhaustion, fear and tedium.
Calling motherhood a woman’s “Job” only serves to keep a woman in her place.
If we start referring to motherhood as the beautiful, messy privilege that it is, and to tending to our children as the most loving yet selfish thing we do, perhaps we can change the biased language my mother used.
Only when we stop talking about motherhood as sacrifice can we start talking about mothers the way that we deserve.

The orginal article.

Summary of “When Health Law Isn’t Enough, the Desperate Line Up at Tents”

Ms. Neal had driven six hours from Hickory, N.C., with her wife, Angel Neal, 35.
Robin Neal has fought Type 1 diabetes since age 10, she said.
Angel Neal, who drives a forklift, has pancreatitis.
In a backward baseball cap with a tattoo of stars and musical notes on her neck, Robin Neal, looking unwell, was interviewed by a triage nurse.
“You need to go to the E.R.,” she told Ms. Neal.
Angel Neal was suffering abdominal pain and nausea.
After an hour in the tent hooked up to intravenous drips, the women were discharged.
Robin Neal, whose vision was tested at 20/100, desperately needed a pair of the free eyeglasses RAM offered.

The orginal article.

Summary of “‘The Big Sick,’ South Asian Identity and Me”

Starring and co-written by Kumail Nanjiani, who was born in Karachi, it explores the South Asian identity in depth, and speaks to conflicts that many of us face growing up in America.
A number of South Asian women have expressed a reaction completely different from mine, seeing “The Big Sick” as yet another movie that portrays South Asian women as inherently less desirable.
For the website Jezebel, the Brooklyn artist Aditi Natasha Kini wrote a critique of the film, titled “I’m Tired of Watching Brown Men Fall in Love With White Women Onscreen.” On Vice, Amil Niazi wrote, “I found myself growing increasingly frustrated and then infuriated with the clich├ęd, stereotypical depictions of South Asian women that have unfortunately become the norm in the growing onscreen narratives of brown men.”
Tanzila Ahmed, writing for The Aerogram, a South Asian culture site, summed up the critique this way: “Once again, Muslim Brown women were crafted as undesirable, conventional and unmarriageable for the Modern Muslim-ish Male.”.
I didn’t see “The Big Sick” as a rejection of South Asian women, but rather a rejection of arranged marriage, a difficult and searing subject for some of us who have experienced it up close.
Of course, Mr. Nanjiani, Mr. Patel and many, many other South Asian children who grew up in the United States didn’t have an experience like mine.
The critique of “The Big Sick” as contributing to stereotypes of South Asian women is surely understandable.
In my eyes, the point wasn’t to relegate South Asian women to a punch line, but to add levity to a story in which Mr. Nanjiani struggles with a choice that could isolate him from his family.

The orginal article.