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Women, Big Ideas, and Social Networking Technologies: Hidden Assumptions

Women, Big Ideas, and Social Networking Technologies: Hidden Assumptions
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Author(s): Zhang Wei (Peking University, China) and Cheris Kramarae (University of Oregon, USA)
Copyright: 2012
Pages: 13
Source title: Globalization, Technology Diffusion and Gender Disparity: Social Impacts of ICTs
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Rekha Pande (University of Hyderabad, India) and Theo van der Weide (Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0020-1.ch006

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Abstract

The assumption that women are not capable of generating big ideas is entrenched in the mainstream consciousness and may appear in many guises. In the current mainstream discourse on women’s use of social networking technologies, similar assumptions implicitly presuppose that, compared with men’s use of the new social networking technologies, women’s ideas and activities on the social Web are deficient and less serious. To open further the conversation about women’s empowerment on the social Web and enhance feminist global collaborations using new social networking technologies, the authors problematize seven hidden assumptions in both the academic and popular discourse about women’s ideas, interests, and practices on the social Web and raise more questions about women, ideas, and social networking technologies. The analysis reveals that until gendered assumptions about women’s ideas and social networking are examined, digital inequities cannot be adequately addressed.

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