Através do espelho da discriminação com base na aparência

NOVA IORQUE – Será que as mulheres sofrem de um duplo padrão no local de trabalho em relação à sua aparência? Será que já ultrapassámos o fantasma subtil (e às vezes não tão subtil assim) do sexismo na contratação e na promoção - que afecta desproporcionalmente as mulheres - que eu identifiquei, em 1991, como o “quociente de beleza profissional”?

É difícil acreditar que ainda estamos a falar sobre isto 20 anos depois - mas devemos. Quando os anti-feministas defendem que agora existem “condições de igualdade” para as mulheres e que qualquer disparidade entre homens e mulheres nas realizações e nos salários reflecte as próprias escolhas das mulheres, eles deveriam considerar o que costumava ser chamado de “discriminação com base na aparência” (lookism).

Num comentário recente, o sociólogo Michael Kimmel descreveu um caso de Iowa em que uma técnica dentária de 33 anos de idade, Melissa Nelson, foi despedida pelo seu chefe, um homem, não por questões relacionadas com o seu desempenho no trabalho, mas por achá-la muito atraente sexualmente para poder trabalhar ao seu lado, sem ter medo de pôr em perigo o seu casamento. Quando a Nelson processou o chefe, o tribunal emitiu uma decisão abominável – aprovada pelo Supremo Tribunal de Iowa – afirmando o seu direito de despedi-la por este motivo.

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