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Nerd Girls and Geek Girls Are Everywhere!!!

This has been quite a week for girl nerds and geeks with Newsweek's Revenge of the Nerdette leading the pack.

BTW don't you hate those cutesy little additions to people give to jobs to make them girly? Authoress, suffragette, yes even actress and waitress—well at least we don’t have engineerette (damn I hope I didn't give anyone any ideas). Anyway Newsweek, nerdette is neither witty or trendy- it's stupid and old fashioned.

Sorry for the digression. Anyway there are some good things in the article, not the least of which is the following quote from FairerScience friend; Annalee Newitz: of io9 fame.

"For a long time, there's been this stereotype that either you're ugly and smart or cute and not suited for careers in math, science or engineering," says Annalee Newitz, the co-editor of "She's Such a Geek!", a 2006 anthology of women writing about math, tech and science. "One of the big differences between Generation X geeks and girls in their teens now is really just an attitude—an indication that they're much more comfortable."

Jenn (yes our Jenn) had some interesting comments about the article:

An excerpt from the article notes: “They're trying to break down stereotypes by being as proud of their sexuality as they are of their geekiness.” Do girls and women need more pressure about their appearances? It’s ok to be a nerd as long as you’re hot? Is this now just another double standard? I don’t see a lot of boys and men feeling the need to be sexy and geeky. I will give points to the Sexiest Geek Alive pageant – it was co-ed. But onto the positive side - I loved a lot of what was referenced in the article – some of it echoes things we at Fairer Science have said before – including trying to encourage girls in science and technology by highlighting the connections to their every day lives.

And on other Geek Girl fronts- there actually is Nerd Girls Reality Television which is dedicated to busting the myths that "Boys are better at math and science than girls" and that "A female engineer is socially inept girl with no sense of style." They aren't totally ready for primetime (so many typos in their website that even I noticed) and they can get a little whatever with lines like "They're "Beauty and the Geek" all in one package!" but hey they describe the Nerd Girls as

"an impressive team of female engineering students, just one year away from landing top jobs with $70,000 salaries. They turn heads when they enter a room - they're stylish, self-possessed, ambitious and confident. Whether building a solar car or harnessing wind power on a remote island, these girls fully intend to change the planet with their own ingenuity and hard work."

And finally you should read about Window Snyder "Chief Security Something-or-other" at Mozilla Foundation (yes folks that's Firefox) . USA Today describes her as "a self-avowed "geek girl" and daughter of software engineers, Snyder says her mom taught her to program Basic, an early computer programming language, on a Texas Instruments PC when she was 5 years old."

Nerd Girls and Geek Girls Are Everywhere!!!


What I don't get is the american obsession with calling grown women "girls". The female engineering students one year away from getting..." are women not girls!

It drives me crazy, the belittling of grown women. But otherwise women geeks rock ;)

Ah Jokerine you are so right. The whole calling women girls thing used to make me crazy and then I started to let it slide. Thank you for the wakeup call

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