Monday, August 31, 2009

Julia Jordan on the Glassberg-Sands Study

Adam Szymokowicz interviews Jordan in his I Interview Playwrights series. Here is part of her response to question of why there aren't as many women playwrights being produced.
Okay so here's the deal. We can prove bias is at work. It's been proven over and over and over again in many different fields. When respondents believe work, or a resume, belongs to a male they rate it higher, are more likely to produce or hire than when they believe it to belong to a woman. Men and women both hold this bias, though possibly, I think probably for different reasons. In Emily Sands' study of theater, she only found bias by women. This doesn't mean that she found that men don't hold bias. Not finding something means little to nothing in economics. You can't prove a null hypothesis. Bias is easy to hide. Finding something however means that there is AT LEAST as much as was found.

What Emily found was that the female respondents rated scripts purportedly by women as having overall lower value, but it was entirely due to their belief that others would discriminate against the work. They rated the artistic excellence the same whether they thought the script was written by a man or woman. They thought however that audiences wouldn't buy tickets, that awards committees wouldn't honor the work and that the theater would suffer financially if they produced scripts by women (and specifically scripts they thought were by women that had female protagonists) so ultimately they said that though they would like to produce them they would not. This has been entirely missed in the media... They reported women hate women.

3 comments:

Thomas Garvey said...

No comment, however, on how she got Emily Glassberg Sands to carry water for her, and then left her hanging out to dry . . . I'd say based on Julia Jordan's example, women should beware some women . . .

Jack Worthing said...

Readers would do well to check out Thomas's incisive (and polite) questions to Julia Jordan, posted in the comments at Adam's blog.

Thomas Garvey said...

Thanks, Jack. Needless to say, Jordan does not - indeed, cannot - answer those questions.