Sexism and Reporting
I don’t really have a whole lot to say here. In fact, this is a fairly straightforward topic when you’re in Azerbaijan. The idea that women can do certain things like work in a business field, get involved in politics, or make their own decisions is beyond the pale for a lot of people here. Let’s not even go that far, though. Let’s just start with driving. It is a rare occurrence to see a woman driving here, let alone sitting in a front seat at all. Now let’s look at what is quite possibly one of the worst “news articles” I’ve ever read. From Today.Az:
Azerbaijanis dead and injured thanks to a female driver in Baku
June 14, 2010
Yesterday, on the Binagadi highway an ugly accident took place. According to ANS, Hyunday Sonata driven by a female, hit 2 people, when they were trying to cross the road. One of them men, named Ilham, died on the spot. The other one, Musa Gulamirzayev was taken to the hospital. The investigation on this matter is underway. The female driver was detained.
I love when news is dripping with chauvinism. Get over it, folks. The fact that the driver was female is immaterial. I remember female driver jokes from growing up, but despite those digs, I don’t think a majority of people ever took them seriously. Here, those female driver jokes aren’t jokes. Instead, they are just another way to put women in a box, where they are relegated to working in the home and being subservient to men. And I don’t think we need to spend much time pointing out how terrible the article is, even if we ignore the sexism.