I'm a new, young assistant professor in a department of older, mostly male, tenured faculty members—and I have a reverse superpower. In meetings, I somehow become invisible and inaudible. I do make a point of speaking, but nothing in the minutes except the attendance ever verifies that I was there. Just now, in a meeting with a campus visitor, one senior colleague pointed to the full professor next to me and said, "Oh, and Professor Mighty is on that committee as well"—ignoring me. Later, I said—with much ingenue-like shrugging and laughing so as not to be seen as difficult—"Say, you know, I'm on that committee, too." "Oh, yes!" he said. "You are! And you're very important to the committee because you take such good notes!"I'm in my second year of a okay t-t job, and in a department of 8 women and 2 men.. I haven't been a party to anything like the woman above reports, nor have I seen any of the casual misogyny that gets reported on this and other academic blogs. Admittedly I teach in a very small department, but I've been interviewing elsewhere over the last 2 years, and suspect I will leave this place one day for a new institution.
Everyone tells me I'm lucky now, that the male/female dynamic at other schools is way worse than what I experience here.
Q: Is it? Can the women of CM tell me if I should expect to face worse than I've seen? I'm at the start of a career, and I need someone to tell me that I'm not set up to fail just because I'm a woman. Oh, and a lesbian, too. Or is that another thirsty?
A: Post replies below.