Queen Bees, Princess Bees, and Phantom Bees

Going through my list of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Journals with close attention to the freely available and Open Access titles, I came upon this article on women working in Academia in the journal Advancing Women, Volume 32, 2012.

“QUEEN BEES AND MOMMY TRACKING: HOW’S AN ACADEMIC WOMAN SUPPOSED TO GET AHEAD? by DR. HELENE A. CUMMINS

“The Queen Bee believes that she got to the top by her own fortitude and through being savvy. Queen Bees are non-mentors and non-supporting of other women. In this thinking they believe women get to the top on their own. The Queen Bee has achieved high rank on the job with associated high pay and social success. These women according to Staines et al (1974) are often popular with men, have looks going for them and are married. These women do not work for equality for other women and might even oppose programs that do. Mavin (2008, p. S75) identifies the Queen Bee as “a bitch who stings other women if her power is threatened”, as she prefers to work with men (Cherne, 2003).”

There was no equivalent description of a male counterpart. Cummins speaks of the “good old boys network” where the men rise the ladder together (and will retire together which may hold promise for women in the future) but there is a lack of a “good old girls network.”

Interesting article. Nothing earth shattering but it smacks of the truth. Please commiserate or thrill us with your positive stories in your work!

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