Monday, September 25, 2006
In all Propriety!
I've recently received some notes of concern regarding the original picture I selected for my profile (it is no longer available for viewing on the web). Apparently some folks thought it looked a little over-exposed, if you get my gist. It wasn't. But the fear that it might have been has caused me to meditate on what it means to be a woman with a not-very-anonymous blog.
Why do people tend to worry/assume that women who expose their thoughts on the web in blogs and elsewhere might also be baring too much photographically? No one wonders whether maybe male bloggers are showing too much in their photographs (below the waist).
Thinking about this also makes me think about a separate but related issue: the fact that my freshman survey students needed to be reminded to call me by my title and not "Miss" or "Ms." This would almost never happen to a male college professor, no matter how young. If you disagree, fine, let me know. I'm happy to be told otherwise, but I suspect your examples will be few and far between.
The worst part is that I felt compelled to take the original picture down, even though I know there's nothing wrong with it. Because now I'm feeling incredibly self conscious.
I've decided to replace the profile picture with something better. So there's no question of whether or not I'm "flashing a breast."
Ok, so maybe I over-reacted. Blame it on the upper respiratory infection. Don't worry, admirers, I'll get my vanity back and post some more pictures of me when the time comes. But I'm still experimenting with just how anonymous I can be on the web and still be myself and still write truthfully. For now, I'm going to be a Renaissance engraving.