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Nancy Cao
Anya Connelly
English 5
3 August 2016
Is She Worth it, Let Her Work It
We live in a world where gender dictates what toys you are allowed to play with, what
clothes you are supposed to wear, what colors you are supposed to like, what occupations you
can choose from, and how much you get paid. Gender is a "socially constructed idea that has
created a social structure that systematically places women below men" and we have seen this
throughout history to the present day (Zevallos 1). In todays society, we still see women who
cannot vote, women cannot be educated, womens lives are less valued, women are unemployed,
women must work less, women are paid less, women are expected to be mothers, women must
take care of the kids at home, women are expected to cook and clean, women are constantly
sexualized, women are raped and harassed, women are abused, and sometimes young females are
killed, aborted or abandoned because of their gender. These are only some of the issues people
hear about, and women must face these struggles daily. Feminism is the belief that men and
women should be seen as intellectual equals. Men and womens bodies biologically differ from
each other and are capable to perform certain tasks, but these capabilities, due to biology, do not
define their potential, intellect, social functions, and rights. The roles and tasks men play in
society are valued much more, which has given their biological components rewards and
privileges. Because a female's biological components are more frail, and females tend to be more
emotional, they are seen as weak beings that are incapable to perform properly. As a young
woman that believes that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities politically,

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socially, and economically, I belong to the feminists discourse community and I identify as a
feminist. Soon, I will be working for companies and businesses, and I will most likely experience
gender inequality myself, or to my fellow co-workers. Discrimination against gender in the labor
force is an important issue that must be recognized and resolved because women are receiving
lower wages than men, they are not being offered senior roles, they are not offered jobs because
of maternity leave, they are considered unfit workers after bearing children, and they are being
sexually harassed by co-workers or employers. Gender inequality, especially within the
workplace, is not a thing of the past that should be glossed over in todays society; it is still
prevalent and prominent.
All over the world, women are oppressed and encounter gender inequality
periodically, especially in the work force. Women working professional jobs is a fairly new idea
because during World War 2 in 1941, women were called in to work in factories while the men
were away fighting, and this introduced women to work instead of being typical housewives.
Many professions are still male dominated with very little female representation which forms a
prejudice that women are incapable of working in that field, and this leads to less career
opportunities for women. Also, according to the Administrative Australian Municipal, women
dominated positions and professions historically... [attract] lower wages than male dominated
industries and jobs (1). Women tend to over-dominate fields such as education and health
services, but these occupations have a shortage in growth. There is a lack of women in senior
roles and positions because there is a lack of part-time or flexible senior roles, and since women
are expected to take care of the home and children, they cannot accept these high ranking roles in
the work force. In recent studies documented by The Guardian, a survey of 500 managers by
law firm Slater & Gordon showed that more than 40% admitted they are generally wary of hiring

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a woman of childbearing age, or hiring a mother for a senior role (1). Because of these
expectations on women to get married and have families, companies will avoid hiring women
because of maternity leave and a new part-time schedule, and they also state that a third of
managers claim that women are not as good at their jobs when they come back from maternity
leave. There is an inadequacy of consideration for women that want to work in order to advance
further in the company or business. This is a clear example of gender inequality because women
are not given the same opportunities as men due to biological factors, and they are seen as
ineffective, unfit workers. All of these factors explain the wage gap between men and women.
By utilizing covert methods to gender discriminate, women receive lower positions with little
ability for growth and less participation. Even with the same qualifications, men are hired easier,
given more hours and participation, and are given more promotions faster. Not only are women
discriminated due to their gender at work, but many must experience sexual harassment. Many
people do not realize that sexual harassment is also a factor to wage gaps. Sexual harassment by
fellow employees or employers is very uncomfortable and it can be the reason why a woman
leaves or is fired from a good positioned job. According to Women Are Getting Even (WAGE), it
states that women in the workplace that experience long and repeated sexual harassment,
women tend to leave or lose their jobs, potential raises, promotions, opportunities, emotional
stability, ability to work, and sometimes their lives (1). There have been many instances where
women are hired because of their physical features instead of their qualifications, along with
instances where women are fired or not given promotional offers because they were not
interested in a relationship, wanted to stay professional, or declined a date with their employers.
In these cases, women are sexualized and seen as sexual objects, which disadvantages women.
These circumstances are some of the reasons why women do not partake in certain fields and

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why female full-time workers earn only earn 79 cents to a mans dollar, making the gender wage
gap at 21%.
Of course, there are people that do not believe and refuse that the wage gap exists. The
Republican candidate, Donald Trump, is asked by a female audience member what he will do as
president to make sure that women will be paid the same as men, to which he responds, Youre
gonna make the same if you do as good a job. This is a very ignorant statement because there is
a clear gender wage gap and many statistics prove the gender wage gap holds factual evidence
and truth. He states that since he respects women and had women working for [him] in
positions that theyve never worked in terms of construction, in terms of so many different jobs...
he [has] given women more opportunity than [he] would say virtually anybody in the
construction industry. Since he has given women high positioned jobs and does not discriminate
women due to their gender, he refuses the possibility of a gender wage gap. He believes that
working as hard as men will result in women being paid the same wage, which is not true. Based
on the studies previously mentioned, the wage gap is the result of many elements that include
covert gender discrimination in hiring, participation, bias against mothers, sexual harassment,
and promotional pay. These circumstances do not have anything to do with the level of work
women do. Even if a woman and a man work at the same level and pace, he will still be given
more hours, more opportunity, and more promotional offers than her because she is less valued in
the workplace. Trumps reasoning about the wage gap is invalid because he completely
undermines the gender discrimination women must face in the workplace.
I decided to choose feminism as my discourse community and explore into gender
discrimination and gender wage gaps because I am a female that will be working. In the future, I
am most likely going to encounter these struggles with gender inequality in the workplace. There

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will be instances where I am going to be just as qualified as men, and possibly more qualified,
but I still may not be hired or I will not receive a promotion or senior roles because I am a
woman. I want to be constantly aware during job interviews about what positions I am offered
and how much I get paid compared to a man in the same position. I would like to be conscious
and ask myself why I am given a certain position and if it has anything to do with my gender and
physical appearance. I want to know more about my rights, not just as a woman but as a human
being. I want to practice these rights so I am not exploited by my employers. Gender inequality
is an ongoing issue that I and many other women must encounter in multiple different aspects of
our lives, and it is time to speak out and get your moneys worth.

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Works Cited
"40% of Managers Avoid Hiring Younger Women to Get around Maternity Leave." The
Guardian. Guardian News and Media, 11 Aug. 2014. Web. 21 July 2016.

Australian Municipal, Administrative, Clerical and Services Union and others: Equal
Remuneration Case (2012), [2012] FWAFB 5184:
https://www.fwc.gov.au/documents/decisionssigned/html/2012fwafb5184.htm

Gray, Emma. "Donald Trump On Equal Pay: Women Should Do As Good A Job As Men." The
Huffington Post. N.p., 9 Nov. 2015. Web. 21 July 2016.
<http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-equal-pay-wompwomp_us_561d2079e4b050c6c4a2d888>

"Why Is There A Wage Gap?" Why Is There A Wage Gap? The WAGE Project, n.d. Web. 21 July
2016. <http://www.wageproject.org/files/why.php>.

Zevallos, Zuleyka, Dr. "Sociology of Gender." The Other Sociologist. N.p., 27 Nov. 2014. Web.
03 Aug. 2016.