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Girls, Girls, Girls

June 9, 2011

I have been looking at some video footage on the AT&T archives and came across some girl ones! The first is this short film  which explains how to use a dial telephone. It was created by Bell Labs in 1950s. The woman in the video goes through the dial telephone in a step-by-step fashion. Apparently she was a model. I was trying to figure out if we needed any such explicit description of how to do anything with a telephone since. I don’t think so – it all kind of followed naturally. Going wireless, for example, is the landline without the wires.

The next film is even more interesting. It is an attempt by Bell Labs to show that Women can fit into an Engineering world. It features four ‘ real women engineers’.  I both like and hate this. There is some hilarious footage of  a very innocent male College students expressing the opinion that he would not like his wife to be the main bread winner or earn more than him as it would make him insecure. Perhaps though he is merely saying what a lot of people still think.  There are loads of  other things that strike me about this film. Firstly, the situation has not changed much.  In Trinity we have very few women students  in Engineering.  Though, mind you, to be fair currently we have very few people at all in Electronic Engineering.  Secondly, the whole film seems to be built around the notion that the only way to be,  is to be married, and a woman needs to understand how marriage fits with Engineering to work in the field. One of the messages, I think, is that working in Engineering will find you a husband! Though perhaps the scouting, hill-walking women is an example of an alternative option. Scarcasm aside there is also a complete sincere and upbeat feeling about the film. The women speak very openly and I would say are inspiring about how they feel about their jobs and it is clear they have inspired others. It is in part a film of its time of course, but it also seems like a film before its time in an odd way.

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3 Comments
  1. The Ghost of Pickles permalink

    V interesting; kinda seems the same processes have been running thru society for longer than I’d thought, and I guess the “push” influences of telecommunications is alot older than Sky News and the Interweb

  2. Ronan permalink

    I’d like to think that things have improved since then. I can’t say all the prejudice is gone, but I think there are enough role-models out there that the idea that a woman can’t be the main earner or a lead in an engineering project is gone. I have always wondered… is engineering worse than other professions.. in the late 60’s, there would have been few women in responsible positions in any profession.

  3. I should not look at whether a man or woman, as long as they meet good engineering tasks or problems understanding everything will be fine. Of course women are less inclined engineering. However the film may be used to explain how students work a phone call, all those processes, sending signals to central taxation beginning, and all others.Rent A Car Brasov

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