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女性真的不如男性么?

2014-08-13    来源:21世纪    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

Self-doubt harms women

Women have made much progress in gaining equality in work and life over the past half century. In many developed countries such as the US and the UK, women now earn more college and graduate degrees than men do. Women make up half the workforce and are closing the gap in middle management.
过去的半个世纪里,女性工作和生活上的地位变得更加平等。在英美等发达国家,上大学并且拿到学位的女性甚至比男性还要多。公司里,一半的员工都是女性,而中等管理层中男女比例的差距也日益减小。

But however hard women work, it is the men around them who continue to get promoted faster and be paid more. In both the corporate and the political worlds, women are nearly absent from the top positions.
然而,不论女性如何努力工作,她们身边的男性总能更快晋升,获得更多薪酬。不论在商界还是在政界,女性几乎一直被排除在最高领导层之外。

It has been argued that women’s maternal instinct makes it harder for them to find a balance between their home and work lives. Other commentators say cultural and institutional barriers hinder female success. But according to a latest best-seller, all these arguments miss something more basic: women’s lack of confidence.
有人认为,女性的母性本能让她们很难平衡家庭与工作。而另一些评论者则表示,文化和社会习俗的壁垒才是女性事业成功的拦路虎。但是,在最近的一部畅销书中,作者却认为所有这些观点都忽略了一个最基本的原因:女性本身缺乏自信。

The book, tilted The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance, is co-authored by distinguished women journalists Katty Kay and Claire Shipman. Success depends as much on confidence as competence, according to Kay and Shipman, and there is “a vast confidence gap that separates the sexes”.
在这本名为《信心代码:女性应该掌握的自信科学与艺术》中,两位作者——同时也是出类拔萃的女性记者——凯蒂•肯和克莱尔•希普曼认为,自信和竞争力一样对成功都至关重要,而男女性别之间却存在“巨大的信心差异”。

In two decades of covering American politics as journalists, Kay and Shipman have interviewed some of the most influential women in the country. In their jobs and lives, they walk among women anyone would assume to be brimming with confidence. And yet their experience suggests many of these women are full of self-doubt.
在二十年的美国政治记者生涯中,肯与希普曼曾经采访过美国一些最具影响力的女性。她俩曾接触到了很多人们眼中信心满满的女性,但多年的经验让肯与希普曼发现,即使在这些女性中,也有很多人对自己充满怀疑。


High expectations
期待过高


Even Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told the writers: “There are still days I wake up feeling like a fraud, not sure I should be where I am.”
就连Facebook的首席运营官雪莉•桑德伯格都曾在书中对作者坦言,“即使现在,我有时还是会一觉醒来觉得上天在耍我,并且怀疑自己应不应该待在现在的位置。”

In a feature story in The Atlantic, Kay and Shipman say that conversations like this inspired them to write the book. After expansive research, they found that, compared with men, women don’t consider themselves as ready for a promotion until they meet 100 percent of the requirements; and they generally underestimate not only their abilities but also their performance.
在《大西洋月刊》的一篇专题报道中,肯与希普曼说,正是上面这样的对话让她们萌生了写作本书的想法。在经过大量调查研究之后,她们发现:与男性不同,女性觉得自己只有达到了所有要求才算为升职做好了准备;而女性不仅普遍低估了自己的能力,而且对自己的表现也缺乏信心。

According to The New York Times, in one recent British study, a business school professor asked students how much they would deserve to earn five years after graduation. The women’s estimates were 20 percent lower than the men’s.
而在《纽约时报》最近披露的一项英国研究中,某商学院的教授问他的学生,觉得自己毕业五年后应该挣多少钱?结果,女生给出的答案要比男生低20%。

The writers point out that a lack of confidence is behind a number of familiar female habits. For example, many women have the tendency to take the blame when things go wrong, while crediting circumstance — or other people — for their successes.
作者指出,导致女性缺乏信心的原因在于她们一些常见的工作习惯。比如,许多女性在出问题时,总喜欢责怪自己,而将自己的成功归功于环境或他人。

Perfectionism is another confidence killer, the writers point out. Women don’t answer questions until they are totally sure of the answer. They don’t submit a report until they’ve edited it a thousand times.
作者还认为,完美主义是另一个“信心杀手”。如果没有百分之百的把握,女性一般不会回答问题;不经过一遍遍修改,她们也不会递交报告。

In short, because women think they’re less competent than they really are, they’re also less self-confident than they should be. It’s a vicious circle.
简而言之,正是因为女性低估了自己的竞争力,导致她们缺乏信心,从而形成恶性循环。


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