The Guardian documents a new study reporting on why women in the sciences are leaving academia at much greater rates than men. According to the study’s results, the number of women in science PhD programs who report wanting to remain in academia plummets the longer they spend working on their degrees. Women learn, by observation and experience, that their gender will be an impediment to their progress, and they reported more than men did that the great sacrifices demanded of them were too large.
While this study focused on the sciences, I think it might apply in the social sciences and humanities as well. Academia is full of gendered micro-inequalities, though women have largely made progress over time. The question remains, though: do we expect women to tough it out and face harder obstacles than men in order to pursue the same careers, or do we start to look at changing the system?