Hi. My name is Andrew Sheldon. And I’ve loved movies ever since I can remember.
I foster my love for cinema with long Sunday afternoons of marathons, pilgrimages to Jersey City’s beautiful Historic Loew’s Theater to catch 35mm film prints of classics, and insulate myself with friends who could, if needed, communicate entirely in movie quotes.
But in college, as I took in more and more cinema, I noticed a giant, glaring issue: “Where are all the women?”
Seriously — where are they and why, when they do show up, are they there only to service the male’s storyline?
Growing up, television seemed a better place to find stories with strong, central female characters. In the late 90s, I never missed an episode of Buffy, and Lisa was (and still is) my favorite Simpson. Thanks to characters Leslie Knope (Parks and Recreation) and Liz Lemon (30 Rock), there was an entire hour of situational comedy every week centered around strong, independent female characters.
It has therefore been hard to ignore the same discrepancies in the business world (entertainment is indeed show business).
There’s even a 30 Rock gag about gender inequality in the workplace:
Afraid her mostly male writer’s room hold back on lewd humor when she’s around because she’s female, she asks her boss Jack (Alec Baldwin) if he treats her any differently because she’s a woman.
“Of course I do,” he says without blinking. “I pay you less.”
It’s one of those jokes that stings just a little bit, but until I started writing for NJBIZ, I never realized how far reaching these inequalities were. Therefore, I hope to add to the conversation regarding the issues at hand by contributing to this blog.
Meg Fry, the leading contributor to “Breaking Glass,” seemed hesitant at first about asking me to participate. Even though she strongly believes NJBIZ should include male voices in the blog, she was uncertain I held any interest.
She clearly wasn’t prepared for my enthusiasm. This is a conversation I truly care about and one I’m honored to be a participant of. I look forward to continuing my education on the subject.
Also on NJBIZ's Women in Business "Breaking Glass" blog: