Women in Woodworking (3rd Podcast)
Sound Cloud: https://soundcloud.com/darbinorvar
In many ways, ever since I began woodworking seriously I have been wondering why there weren't more women involved in making things. I mean woodworking, but also building anything with metal, cnc and engineering too.
I don't think it is a surprise to anyone that women are not generally associated with woodworking. I mean there are examples, but for the most part women are bunched in with the softer crafts like sewing, cooking and home décor. If instagram is any indication though, there are a lot of women giving woodworking and design a new life that is both nuanced and practical.
I think the focus here in my mind is where are things going from here. I try not to pay too much attention to the past, I am future-oriented and am really excited to see where the new-found freedom in building, engineering and design goes. I come from one basic perspective, people behave based on what is around themselves. If you expose men and women, boys and girls to building many will be interested, if we do not then they are unlikely to think about it as a way to express themselves.
I don't agree that we should accept the concept of gender-based behaviors as they are assumed to relate to woodworking and building. I believe things are learned, learned through our environments, and our environments are vast and complicated. Lets agree there is no “building gene”, and that lots of people would benefit from the experience and pleasure of building and woodworking, if only it was presented in a way to attract more interest.
It seems like we often impose barriers to subjects on ourselves or others all the time. Many of these preferences are because of a wrong perspective, like that certain people can do math, and some cannot. Other subjects just seem more male, which can bar women from thinking about them as an option as well. It is more likely that these environments we either create ourselves or adopt from our families are just wrong. I believe that if you want to be a good example and encourage others to learn to express themselves in woodworking, making or even science you must watch out how you yourself believe about these subjects. You are really more of an influence on others than you realize.