Days Long GoneThe days where I looked up to my teachers with respect, trusting that they knew more than me and were going to present the material in as much of an un-biased way as possible is evidently long long past. It's possible that it never even existed at all - okay, well, maybe it was true for a few months back in kindergarten.
This semester has already been fruitful in dispelling the myth of professors being objective - i.e. History of Psych prof who thinks natural science psychology represents the Armageddon of the world of science. Unfortunately, I now have another psych prof to add to this every growing list.
My psych of gender prof has never been the sharpest tool in the shed, to use a clichéd cliché. She's a perfect candidate for What Not To Wear and frequently loses track of what she's talking about. I don't particularly enjoy the class either, because the majority of what we talk about it entirely based on stereotypes between men and women. It gets old very quickly, and doesn't provide any particle ways for us to escape the self perpetuation system of these stereotypes.
I don't normally make it habit of challenging professors, because unlike some students I do have respect for them and their position. However, this time my prof's bias was so utterly blatant and it was steering the conversation in a completely unnecessary and useless direction.
She was talking about women in the work force, and how the glass ceiling can sometimes prevent women from attaining higher status positions. Women are grossly outnumbered in executive positions, this is well documented. The prof then asked the class what, if anything, is currently being done to make the work-force a more equitable place. One class member mentioned that some companies are implementing more flexible work schedules in order for women with children to have more flexibility in when they can come in and when they can leave - instead of the strict 9-5.
This was the only potential helpful strategy that we were allowed to discuss. Following this comment, the prof went on a 15 minute schpeil (this is a 50 minute class, so that's a large chunk of the entire class) on how detrimental flexible schedules can be. She started talking about how other people to have to pick up this slack, how much more money it is going to cost the tax-payers. When she was working at a job, she was job-sharing with a lady who always came in late so the prof always had to stay longer and ended up doing the majority of the work. (Sarcasm doesn't generally translate well in text, so read those last few sentences with dripping disdain and sarcasm).
I couldn't believe it. I thought I was going to blow a gasket. I stuck my hand into the hair, and when called upon, said: "I think a main reason that the glass ceiling still exists and that programs to implement things like more flexible work schedules tend to fail in the work-place is due to the exact attitude of fear. Fear of what's going to happen to everyone else, fear of how the non-married women without children are going to be effected, fear of how much more taxes we'll have to pay. Those attitudes are a fundamental problem which needs to be addressed in order to make sure that these programs work out fairly."
I can tell the prof was so pissed, she had this defiant look on her face. She barely waited for me to finish my last syllable when she interjected with: "So you think that attitudes are the only problem and that there are no practical problems with these programs?"
I said: "I never said that at all, and that was far beyond my point. What I said was that fear and such attitudes as you were displaying are a fundamental problem that also needs to be addressed in conjunction with practical problems".
She just looked at me and said: "Well, okay, we have to move on now". Pfft. That's what I thought. She just didn't like hearing that she's afraid and biased.
I was so pissed off for the rest of the day. It's incredible that she was so blatantly biased, trying to pass those biases off on us, denying the issue, trying to put words into my mouth, and completely foregoing an opportunity to talk about how we could work towards ameliorating the work-force.
Days long gone, indeed.
Listening to: Golden Touch - Razorlight