my tragic right hip

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April 12th, 2013

Book Review #11 – Lean In

Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead seems to be garnering speed. Of course, Sheryl Sandberg’s in a position to spread the gospel of her book as the current COO of the world’s biggest social media site, Facebook. Her overarching message, that women need to lean in to their work life instead of falling back, resonates without. In a sense, it doesn’t really need to be a whole book–there’s a lot of repetition in terms of message–but I’m choosing to celebrate what it is: a manifesto of how feminism hasn’t quite achieved the equality women need in the workplace.

Manifesto, defined: a piece of work that urges readers/users/doers to carry out the change they wish to see in the world. In a sense, while ‘manifesto’ rings perhaps a bit to the left for Sandberg, it’s how it reads to me. There’s great research in here, both empirical and anecdotal, about how, regardless of the impact of the various waves of feminism over the last fifty years, there is still not equality in the upper levels of the companies that are running the world. How do we change that? Sandberg has very real and actually quite straightforward opinions about how to exact change–and, for once, I’m happy that she’s using the “f” word–feminism.

Those of us who would consider themselves feminists have no issues with the terminology. And I’m consistently surprised at how much we’re still divided by simply using the word. Strong women come from strong women. I’ve been lucky in my life to have role models, whether they worked primarily in the home or outside of it, where women are strong minded, intelligent, and have worked impossibly to build both family and foster their children to unite in a different kind of world. I was shocked that less than 4% of parents that stay home in the US are dads. For the majority of my friends, the women are the breadwinners–and that’s an exciting change. It’s challenging for all of us, because we’re still looking for that balance between work life and home life, and it’s forever changing. But it’s wholly different from my mother’s generation. Anyway, I’m still thinking about this book. I was all fired up at work a couple of weeks ago when I finished it, and now I’m not quite sure where to go next…

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Girl with titanium hip will rock. Girl with titanium hip will write. Girl with titanium hip will read. Girl with titanium hip will battle crazy-ass disease called Wegener's Granulomatosis. Now stuff that in your spelling bee!

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