In our class discussion on Tuesday, the topic of powerful women came up. The discussion was that women who gain power often times cannot handle that power and thus go out to end the world, or at least cause mass destruction. After our discussion, I was curious to see just how many real women in our society hold powerful positions in opposition to the number of men in power. One google search later and I came up to Forbes article entitled, “The World’s Most Powerful People”.
Out of the 70 people Forbes listed, only a mere SIX of those people were women. 6! That is not even 10% of the list. Why is this? Is it just the mere gender stereotyping? Or is it due to the fact that men are often seen as more powerful individuals and therefore they are the ones who often are given these higher powerful positions. The number one spot on the Forbes list went to President Obama. However, do you guys think that if America had a woman President, that she would still hold that number one spot? Quite honestly, I’m not sure she will. There is simply a premeditated convention that powerful positions go to men and women often times cannot handle the pressure of having that much power. Before I go off onto a whole other tangent on why there is still no American female president, I want to draw your attention to the fact that even though there are only 6 women on this list, this is a steady rise from the four women that were included in the list in the year 2010. My only hope is that these numbers continue to rise.
Even though the number of women who are considered to have power within this world are very low, one has to consider the fact that in most countries, women are still not allowed to hold any position of power let alone rule a country , or become a CEO of a company in that particular country. If this class has taught me one thing, it is that women, although have achieved great suffrage and gained some power, are still not held and regarded on the same level as men. While this is a sad realization to come to, there is hope that these numbers will continue to rise and I hope that one day, the women will be of equal numbers on this list as males within the world. Here's the list of the 6 women who were considered to be powerful within the world and some info on them.
4. Angela Merkel: Chancellor, Germany. Also listen as #1 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women". The world's most powerful woman heads Europe's most vibrant economy and is widely viewed as the de facto leader of the EU.
11. Sonia Gandhi: President, Indian National Congress Party, Indian National Congress, one of the major political parties in India. Also listed as #7 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women". In September 2010, on being re-elected for the fourth time, she became the longest serving president in the 125- year history of the Congress Party.
16. Hilary Clinton: Secretary of State, United States of America. Also #2 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women".
22. Dilma Rousseff: President, Brazil. Also listed as #3 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women". She is the first woman to ever hold this position. Prior to that, in 2005, she was also the first woman to become Chief of Staff to the President of Brazil
39. Christine Lagarde: Managing Director, International Monetary Fund. Also ranked #9 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women". She is the first woman to run the IMF inherits an institution in crisis, overseeing multibillion-euro bailouts of Greece, Ireland, and Portugal.
64. Jill Ambramson: Executive Editor, The New York Times. Also listed as #12 on Forbes list of "Powerful Women". Assuming this position in September 2011, she became the first woman to hold this position the paper's 160-year history.