Posted in: ASOR
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By: Beth Alpert Nakhai,  University of Arizona

In a recent article in The Atlantic, Anne-Marie Slaughter reflected on the question, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All” (July/August 2012; vol. 310/1: 84-102).  For women working in Near Eastern archaeology, this question is likely one they have asked themselves (and their colleagues, partners, spouses, and friends) many times!  For several years, I have been engaged in a research project designed to describe and assess the status of women in ASOR.  Last fall, ASOR president Tim Harrison appointed me to spearhead an Initiative on the Status of Women in ASOR.  I sent out an email inquiry to our membership, asking people to share their thoughts on the status of women in ASOR and in Near Eastern archaeology.  Slightly more than 2000 people received the email.  The fact that almost half those people opened it indicates a high degree of interest in the topic; more commonly, only a third of ASOR emails are opened.  Some 160 people, divided fairly evenly between men and women, sent me responses.  These responses were mixed: brief, long, bullet-pointed, stream-of-conscious, positive, negative, enthusiastic, battle-weary.  A number of people, junior and senior alike, requested anonymity – but others were willing to be named.  I have opted to keep all responses anonymous, since attribution is not a valuable condition for this project.


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    • Dr. David Tee
    • July 11, 2012

    I know I am going to be hated for the following comments but they must be said. Women just do not get it. Their role in life is NOT to be men or leaders. Their role was defined at creation as helpmeets, which was reinforced by the Book of Ephesians and others.

    It is not a second class role or one that makes them unequal but it is a defining one. There has to be a hierarchy one person in charge or nothing would get done and God ordained the man as the leader. This is consistent with both the OT & NT teachings.

    Someone has to be in charge, everyone cannot be the top dog and that responsibility falls to the man. The women have other duties to fulfill and they should stop trying to usurp authority from men.

    Does this mean that women are not to be educated? Of course not. An educated helpmeet is important to a family's organization's health. Does this mean that women do not get to have input? Of course not. Women have insights and gifts from God that are vital to a relationship or other activity and their input should be considered.

    Does this mean that women are second class and unequal? Of course not. it just means that men have one role and duty to perform and owmen have another. Woemn who reject their role are disobedient to God and sin and men who abuse theirs do the same.

    • Beth Alpert Nakhai
    • July 12, 2012

    Federal Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) laws prohibiting job discrimination include: (i) Equal Pay Act of 1963 protects men and women who perform substantially equal work in the same establishment from sex-based wage discrimination; (ii) Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; (iii) Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 protects individuals who are 40 years of age or older; and (iv) Civil Rights Act of 1991 provides monetary damages in case of intentional employment discrimination.

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