From Polar Winds to Tropical Breezes
Chapter 13: The Big Picture from Polar Winds to Tropical Breezes
Betty Jane Punnett, John Miller and Donald Wood Women are achieving in all kinds of positions, and succeeding at all levels, around the world. During the week of 3 August 2005, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) World Service’s Today programme ran a series of interviews with women in jobs traditionally associated with men. The women included Marin Alsop, the ﬁrst woman to head a major US orchestra, Sandra Edokpayl, Nigeria’s ﬁrst female mechanic, Holly Bennett, one of Europe’s only female explosive engineers, and Tahany Al-Gebaly, Egypt’s ﬁrst woman Supreme Court judge. These success stories illustrate what women can achieve. At the same time, the very fact that these women are unusual indicates the challenges that women face in traditionally male preserves. The BBC’s interest in successful women highlights the rationale for this book. We, the authors, began by saying something like ‘there are amazing examples of successful women, no matter where we look, yet we know women face major challenges in succeeding – let’s ﬁnd out about these women’. Our initial interest was simply to describe successful women from diﬀerent countries and identify how they were similar to or diﬀerent from one another. Much like the BBC’s interviews, we wanted to hear what successful women said about their success. We were fascinated by the stories from the women we surveyed and interviewed, and we believe our readers will ﬁnd their stories equally interesting. The comments of the women we interviewed are remarkably similar to those reported by the BBC....
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