MindShift Partners with the Spottiswoode Institute
Neil Postman was an author whose work examined and debated a wide range of important and contemporary issues, some philosophical in nature. “Amusing Mr. Sloane” was one of his most famous books. In his text, Postman analyzes the conception of humor and how it is employed in our lives. A highly valuable and entertaining book, it focuses on how mankind has evolved the interpretation of humor and the way we look at it. The book is an essential part of anyone who’s interested in comedy and clowning.
Among the key topics that Postman examines in his book is the concept of meaning in society and what it means to be humorous. The meaning of meaning is how people interpret and evaluate context and who the audience is. Postman’s argument is that you can’t really assume that someone is “truly funny” or truly “comical” based on how much they enjoy it. His argument is that one must actually engage in the concept of humour or else one has simply been taught to imagine it. Postman finds humor through observing and observing what really makes a difference and how we can recognize and understand “meaning” to make us more social beings.
In his argument, Postman also examines the definition of the female programmer. According to him, female programmers often take on the role of storyteller. In fact, this role is often neglected. As a result, the women who are in these roles find it difficult to actually fulfill their role as a programmer.
In fact, according to the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), a recent survey of over 200 companies found that 79% of firms “do not offer a formal structure for managing women’s professional and personal lives”. This gender inequality makes it difficult for many women to successfully make progress in their careers, hence preventing them from pursuing a family and subsequently resulting in family issues.
“So while we share interesting technological advancements over the years, often it is the women who spearheaded the development of many of these technologies, and we often forget this fact in our attempts to ‘gender theory’ the benefits and challenges of successful female engineers,” says Rachel Spottiswoode, a diversity expert and founder of MindShift.
So what does this mean in a practical sense?
“It means that we as a society are still not able to effectively understand how to overcome the significant barriers women face in their careers or how to encourage and nurture their growth, and the message we get from this failure is that women ‘don’t understand programming’. As a result, many of the most highly trained female engineers, scientists and programmers are at risk of being lost to science and technology”, says Spottiswoode.
Women have demonstrated great technical expertise and have been making incredible strides in building tech businesses and technologists over the years. However, they are not consistently considered for key roles and as a result, being dismissed and ignored by the male-dominated tech ecosystem. In fact, many women are experiencing a lack of recognition for their work. “Through our work, we hope to work towards improving this situation. In our own small way, we hope to promote awareness of women’s achievements and help encourage the international digital community to recognise and welcome women into technology development”, says Spottiswoode.