陈椰子

“想做一朵贴在地上的云” //大学生/女权主义者/社会学/性别研究

大学的“女性化”程度够了吗?(一个英语课程作业)

课程作业,不要当真。The "Feminization" of Colleges is Far From Enough

椰子按:

这是我的朋友Only“英语论说文写作”的课程作业。Only表示,虽然她怀疑quota对于促进教育领域性别平等的效用(quota在她文中体现为,大学理工科应采取“录取女生人数至少占总人数30%”的政策),但由于作业要求提出“significant, original, debatable, attractive”的观点,她就凑合着用了这个quota暴论。而她之所以能想到这个暴论,也是因为她中学阶段就处于男女比例悬殊的理科竞赛班,感受过老师随口泼的“女生数学思维就是会差一点”,也感受过boys’ club的窒息氛围(她随时能听到班里男生的黄笑话和女性鉴赏)。

“为什么不选择给男性一个文科的quota呢?”

“哈,文科历来是配不上男性的低贱学科,高中的文科男只不过是在班级感到一些存疑的压抑,但理科班女生受到的压抑不止于班级。不过,从这也可看出性别平等对所有性别都好。”Only又对我发表了一通暴论。

我认为,在看上去“机会平等”(考理科竞赛班看的是成绩、大多数高校招生也只看高考成绩)教育领域中,存在许多“机会平等”前的“不平等”,比如陪伴女孩们成长的“女生数学思维就是会差一点”。这些不平等潜移默化地造成了理工科的悬殊性别比,让女孩们在窒息氛围中继续窒息,进而让“女生数学思维就是会差一点”成为自我实现的预言。因此,在现有的不平等未能消除之时,quota或许是一个看上去简单、可行也的确有用(许多国家在政治领域中用quota规定议员的最小性别比)的做法,看上去补偿了“不平等”,也给了我们在此生中看到“结果平等”的机会。不过,正如Only在最后一段指出,quota只是一种解决方法而非最终的解决方法,它只是强行让结果看上去平等而非根除万恶之源——父权制。

嗯,我们期待性别平等而quota变得无用的那一天。在此之前,不妨随便看看Only的课程作业。

The "Feminization" of Colleges is Far From Enough

Only

"Our colleges have become girls'!" A candidate of the National People's Congress posted on Weibo. Indeed, China's female undergraduates have outnumbered the male since 2009. However, girls make up less than 22% of students in Science and Engineering majors -- the "feminization" of colleges is far from enough. In my opinion, Colleges should adopt a quota system that reserves 30% seats for women in Science and Engineering majors.

The quota system will break up the boys' club and encourage girls in Science and Engineering. In Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys’ Club of Silicon Valley, Emily Chang defined "Brotopia" and "boy's club" as the place where men hold all the cards and make all the rules. The same things happen in colleges. According to 2020 research published in The Physics Teacher, the current Physics learning environment suffocates girls by isolation, gendered microaggressions, and the ubiquity of stereotypes. The quota system becomes a must, as female peers can serve to provide reassurance, unite to criticize microaggressions and break up stereotypes. Then why 30%? A 2008 research in Organizational Dynamics suggests that 30% represents a critical mass from which point minority groups can impact boardroom dynamics. Thus, in the classroom, at least 30% of girls are needed to challenge the male-dominant atmosphere.

Meanwhile, gender quotas ensure the equality of outcome. As Simone de Beauvoir wrote in The Second Sex, "One is not born, but rather become, a woman." A baby grows up into a woman after hearing "Girls are poor at Science and Engineering" thousands of times. These are barriers preventing girls from favoring Science and Engineering. And if barriers exist, compensatory measures like quotas must be introduced as a means to reach equality of outcome. Besides, as Catherine Mayer (Co-Founder of the Women's Equality Party) put it, "Quotas are about ripping open the doors and letting people in. If warm words and targets without teeth were enough, we'd be a hell of a lot closer to parity." Quotas are a great way to create institutional changes, and may be the only way if we want to see equality (of outcome) in our lifetime.

Some may argue that quotas harm girls, as girls do not want themselves to "be in the position only because they are girls." However, gender quotas cannot force girls to choose Science and Engineering. Instead, they convey the message "girls can do it", and support girls who feel frustrated every time they hear "Girls are not fit for Science and Engineering". Girls are here not only because they are girls, but also because they are brilliant and for centuries there has been an unwritten quota for men.

In conclusion, colleges should adopt the 30% quota to encourage girls and reach equality of outcome. Also, keep in mind that quotas are just a necessary solution rather than a radical solution. They compensate for underlying barriers that prevent girls from choosing Science and Engineering majors, rather than eradicate the toxic patriarchy. I am looking forward to the day when we abolish patriarchy and gender quotas become useless. 




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