We Are Too Serious About Unserious Women

Emily and Hanna

I am trying to understand how this surge of interest in women voters and female candidates and female styles of leadership lasts past tomorrow. I keep recalling that in the fall of 2008 we also saw a huge uptick in women pundits on television and gender-related polling questions and smart commentary on women. But then it seems to fade out after the campaign.

As Emily observes, what women want turns out to be as complicated as what men want. And it also turns out that women campaign differently than other women and govern differently as well. I have to think that it’s always good for women to have different kinds of women in leadership roles, even when they don’t espouse what I see as pro-women policies. But what saddens me a little about these past weeks is the seriousness with which we have sometimes taken unserious women. Cuteness and craziness still count for so very much.

My question to you both is less “was this election good or bad for women?” than “How do we keep having this conversation about women and politics and the media once the fever over the election has broken?”