If I really wanted, I could keep this post quite short and simply state that being a woman in the agricultural industry isn’t ideal. I could even be so bold to say, with complete honesty, it sucks. But, that would be a very generalizing description, and I think it may be more beneficial if I did elaborate a wee bit, hence why we’re here and you’re still reading.
The sexist attitude towards women in agriculture is one that has been in existence, arguably, since the beginning of time. It still exists today, though not to the same extent it did years ago in terms of its severity, likely because society has made advancements towards gender equality in occupations, and further in general.
I minored in Women and Gender Studies in university, so while I realize what I am about to say is a bit retractive, I still believe it to be true; there are still a lot of occupations in existence that favour and are dominated by men, and if I am being transparent, this occurrence probably will not be eradicated in my own lifetime. I’m hopeful for generations after my own the sexism apparent in a lot of jobs will diminish, but it is difficult to say where we will be at with women’s rights at that point.
As a woman in agriculture, I often find myself being talked over or ignored entirely. When I discuss my own knowledge of certain types of farming, I am frequently told I am incorrect or misinformed, when I know I am not. I’m often told that I am unable to perform certain jobs because I am female, which isn’t true. I am not taken seriously. These are a few examples of the realities I encounter as a result of identifying as female and being involved in agriculture, and all of these unfortunate happenings I’ve described are conducted by, you guessed it, men.
Perhaps things will change while I’m still above ground, and I hope they do. The depictions and perception of women in agriculture is one that has been misrepresented for far too long, and things need to improve.