5 Mar 2020

WOMEN HAVE made great strides in the employment market over the past 50 years. But many still feel that their progress is being obstructed and, to coincide with International Women’s Day on March 8th, two new books by feminist writers tackle the issues.

In “The Fix” Michelle King, director of inclusion at Netflix, a video-streaming giant, observes that women are constantly told they need to change themselves—be more assertive, work longer hours and so on. Instead, she argues, working practices should change to accommodate the needs of half the adult population. In “The Home Stretch” Sally Howard, a journalist, suggests that a big reason why women are held back is that even those who work full-time are still expected to do the bulk of the housework. To cite the book’s lengthy but apposite subtitle, she makes a strong case “why it’s time to come clean about who does the dishes”.

Male managers may find these books an uncomfortable read, peppered with talk of the patriarchy and gender privilege. Sometimes, the authors go too far. Ms Howard links the patriarchy with capitalism so often that one wonders whether she has ever seen a picture of the Soviet Union’s all-male politburo or considered the harm done to women and baby girls by the Chinese Communist Party’s one-child policy.

But men do not need to forsake the...

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This content was originally published by The Economist: Business. Original publishers retain all rights. It appears here for a limited time before automated archiving. By The Economist: Business

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