Zosia Mamet Isn’t A Fan Of The #LeanIn Culture

She says we are so obsessed with “making it” these days we’ve lost sight of what it means to be successful on our own terms

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by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

Girls star Zosia Mamet has written a very thinly-veiled critique of lean-in culture. The actress posits in her most recent US Glamour column that, even though we've got great role models like Hillary Clinton, Beyoncé and Oprah Winfrey, their presence gives us an undue feeling that to be successful is to be powerful and rich.

Zosia believes that actually success lies elsewhere – and she might give it all up to run a twee bakery in the middle of nowhere. 'We are so obsessed with “making it” these days, we’ve lost sight of what it means to be successful on our own terms,' she wrote. 'As women, we have internalised the idea that every morning we wake up, we have to go for the f--king gold. [Feminism] gave us female role models like Hillary and Oprah and Beyoncé, and in the process implied that mogul-hood should be every woman’s goal. We kept the old male ideas of success: power and money. We need new ones!'

She also says that the emphasis on 'leaning-in' can lead to a lot of unsisterly chat too, especially when we get all snide about women who want to take time off to raise kids. 'I get angry that, when a woman decides to hold off on gunning for a promotion because she wants to have a baby, other women whisper that “she’s throwing away her potential". That is when we’re not supporting our own. Who are we to put such a limited definition on success?'

Her solution? That we all strive do to what we want and stop putting pressure on each other. She explained, 'Success isn’t about winning everything; it’s about achieving your dream, be that teaching middle school or flying jets. And no matter what we as individual women want, no matter what our goals, we have to support one another.'

It's an interesting point to make – not everyone can be Beyoncé or Sheryl Sandberg, and so not everyone should strive for that. But, equally, the world makes it so easy for women to not be able to #leanin, so much so that a recent report showed thatthe only linguistic difference between men and women is that we treat women like crap when they're simply trying to speak. So surely we should keep on encouraging women to be the best?

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

Picture: Rex

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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