Gender, Generations, and Faculty Conflict

“In 1979 a distinguished humanist of the older generation, whose two daughters had followed him into academe, commented to me: “Of course I would have preferred it if it had been my sons who succeeded me, but it was the girls. And mostly what I see today are girls. They’re certainly better than nothing.” Although he might have resisted the changes around him, he did not. (Nor had he done much to facilitate them.) He probably would have said that was because scholarship came first. But a decade earlier, he would have been grooming young men, placing them in jobs; now he was content to observe passively what was happening.”
—Columbia University’s Caroline Bynum on academia, generational antagonism, and the dangers of being dismissive of “female squabbling.”

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