Women, Politics and Social Change

By Jennifer Janviere

Dee Dee Myers in a discussion with students from the Diederich College of CommunicationYesterday, Marquette was visited by former White House Press Secretary, author and political commentator Dee Dee Myers. The Diederich College of Communication was fortunate enough to have Ms. Myers stop by Studio 7 in Johnston Hall, where she chatted with students about her experience working on Capitol Hill during the Clinton administration, what it’s like to be the liaison between the president and the press, and the unique pressures of being a woman working in media and politics.

During the discussion, Ms. Myers emphasized the necessity of women in leadership roles, not only in politics, but also in businesses and communities. She pointed to statistics that show women are the ones most likely to develop socially-minded businesses that create jobs for the communities in which they live and are most likely to invest back in those communities. She mentioned that women involved in politics are more likely to advocate for social and environmental reforms than their male counterparts, regardless of party affiliation.

Ms. Myers stressed, however, that although male and female experiences are certainly different from one another, the life perspective of one gender was not superior to that of the other. Rather, she pointed out the need for diverse perspectives in shaping healthy businesses, politics and societies, and that the increasingly important role of women in societies across the globe to ultimately lead to a more peaceful and prosperous world.

It’s a concept that, while nothing new in our culture, is still gaining ground in many places. Living in the U.S, this can sometimes be easy to forget. That’s why it’s great that people like Dee Dee Myers remind us that, while much progress has been made over the last century, there are still many steps ahead on the path to gender equality in politics, business and society.

Jennifer Janviere is a multimedia specialist and instructor in the Diederich College of Communication.

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The opinions expressed here are those of the individual authors and do not represent the views of Marquette University or the Diederich College of Communication.

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