Sample text for How Jane won : 55 successful women share how they grew from ordinary girls to extraordinary women / Sylvia Rimm with Sara Rimm-Kaufman.


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Counter Searching for New Identities

Women of my generation discovered that we were oppressed, and we vowed to change that for ourselves, for our daughters, and for the generations of women who would follow. Most of the world had assumed for too many years that women couldn't be doctors or scientists, attorneys or elected officials, executives, presidents of universities, or highly ranked artists or musicians; and we surely couldn't be news anchors or television producers or editors (of anything other than women's magazines). Although there were a great many other "couldn't bes", at least we could be excellent teachers, nurses, social workers, mothers, and wives. As a matter of fact, it was assumed that we could cook and clean and shop and diaper a lot better than men could.

We had studied history, and it had indeed been his story -- the story of men, with only a few contributions from women like Betsy Ross, Florence Nightingale, and Marie Curie. We had studied the psychology of motivation and achievement and barely noticed the footnotes that indicated the subjects were always boys or men. We learned about Erik Erikson's theories of adult development and were told that we would find our identity through the men we married. We lived the various lives that permitted us to be good helpers but provided few avenues for self-fulfillment. Most of us were even
contented with our lot. Fortunately, some of us were not, and we changed the world forever.

Now women have entered almost every career field closed to them earlier. We continue to struggle with glass ceilings and sticky floors, and with balancing careers, relationships, and families. We are still pioneering the paths that will permit us to fulfill ourselves or combine careers with family and relationships, depending on our choices.

Although each generation will create its own and somewhat different path, the survey for See Jane Win and the stories of How Jane Won were created with the assumption that the research and stories behind successful women's lives can provide road maps for the future. For girls and women who wish to be successful, there's a wealth of wisdom in these pages.


Library of Congress subject headings for this publication: Girls United States, Women United States, Success Psychological aspects, Achievement motivation in women