Monday, September 10, 2012
Dallas’ Marketing Arm is looking for “personable assistant who blends in with irreverent culture”
Sure, a sexy, sexist 1960s work environment makes for interesting TV, but in 2012 it’s degrading and discriminatory.
DALLAS I can’t decide if this is smart or incredibly sexist: The Marketing Arm in Dallas is seeking an executive assistant with the kind of assets Joan Harris, the sultry secretary turned partner on AMC’s Mad Men series, possesses.
TMA’s Joan needs to be a “self-motivated professional with thick skin and a wicked sense of humor to help whip a bustling creative team into shape.” Sorry skinny girls, minorities, and flat chested chicks. Also, she needs to have “no attitude.” Wait, am I thinking of the right Joan? The ad also says the agency wants their Joan to be “our rock, our glue; our cool headed ally when everything is on fire.” Wait, again, are we still talking about the same Joan? Because she is professional at the workplace – but can cut someone down to size with her quick wit – but Joan’s, um, position with the ad agency on Mad Men is far more than a satisfactory secretary. Doesn’t every guy on the show want to sleep with her (and hasn’t Roger many times)? And didn’t the agency pimp her out to get a sale? And if we are talking about hiring a qualified assistant, I’m not sure I’d conjure up the image of Christina Hendricks as part of the job description.
This Joan will report to the company’s executive creative director. I hope he (or she) isn’t married because I’d be pissed if my spouse advertised for an assistant willing to do whatever it takes and work long hours who also happened to be hot and curvy and sassy with no attitude. That’s like advertising for an intern with “Pam Anderson’s boobs and Hillary Clinton’s brains.” Maybe The Marketing Arm got a little too caught up in their creative pitch and tapped too far into their Mad Men mentality. Sure, a sexy, sexist 1960s work environment makes for interesting TV, but in 2012 it’s degrading and discriminatory. This mentality is not about appreciating a woman’s ability so much as her non-confrontational, non fussy attitude. And if she looks hot behind a secretary’s desk and is willing to sleep with her boss at any time and can also balance an account sheet and fix a copier, well, ain’t she pur-fect! Whew.
Feminist rant over. If you want to apply, girls, go for it. I like Joan. I don’t like the men she works with. And though much has changed since 1960 when Sterling, Cooper, Draper, Pryce reigned, much hasn’t.
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