Helping Women Help Themselves, draft, 1971, page 1

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          HELPING WOMEN HELP THEMSELVES 

A Resource Pamphlet to Show You How 

DEFINING THE PROBLEM 

Successful women have high visibility. They are often written up in the media as examples who have "made it in a man's world." When you consider the tiny fraction of people who achieve any kind of noticeable contribution, it is reassuring to see some representatives of the female sex. Unfortunately, these "loophole" women are often pointed to as evidence that women have true equality. So many of us educated women are deluded into thinking that if we hadn't chosen the course of marriage and family we, too, might be "somebody." The truth of the matter is that exceptional circumstances have produced these exceptional women and in every time of social change there will always be very obvious exceptions. What should concern us is what happens to most educated women. 

To begin with, we who have earned college degrees are already exceptions as compared to most Americans. In 1970 the per cent of women over 21 who had been through four or more years of college was 8.5 as compared to 13.8% for men. The gap becomes much wider when you take a look at the professions. Only 9% of all scientists are women, 7% of all physicians, 3% of all lawyers and just 1% of all engineers and federal judges. Although women have [always] made up a large proportion of the teacher corps, the percent of women on college faculties has been steadily declining since 1940. In the political power structure of what purports to be a "representative democracy" there is only one [woman] Senator and 12 women representatives for 53% of the population.