Glass Ceiling

Topics: Racism, Glass ceiling, Management Pages: 4 (1293 words) Published: May 28, 2002
The Glass Ceiling: Fact or Illusion

The glass ceiling is it a fact or an illusion? The two words "Glass Ceiling" are used to describe the barrier that exists for women and minorities-when it comes to getting promoted into the upper echelons of a company. Does the ceiling exist or is it a figment of the imagination? The writer intentions are to present a picture of that ceiling, and show how it plays a part in corporate America. That in fact the ceiling is an injustice being done to women and minorities, and it does exist. Glass is clear, something that can be seen through. A ceiling is the overhead surface of a room, the end point of how high the room is. "If glass ceilings existed, they would allow people to see through to the world above them. Because glass is clear, those existing under such a ceiling might not, at first, even notice that a barrier was in place, which separated them from higher levels. Yet if they tried to pass through, they would quickly learn that the ceiling prevented any such rise" (Russell Madison). The glass ceiling represents modern day racism, not only against minorities, but women as well. Therefore, history has contributed much to the situation. You see, men (white males) have always thought of themselves as the superior being of all races, and gender. A woman's place was always in the home, cooking, cleaning, and raising the children. Minorities (blacks) roles were as slaves, never meant to own anything for themselves, but only to serve. Discrimination is a more polite way to look at it. "Discrimination occurs when the civil rights of an individual are denied or interfered with because of their membership in a particular group or class. Statutes have been enacted to prevent discrimination based on a person's race, sex, religion, age, previous condition of servitude, physical limitation, national origin and in some instances sexual preference". (http://www.law.cornell.edu/topics/civil_rights.html). Studies and statistics show...

Bibliography: Black Enterprise, Sept 1995 v26 n2 p22
Lawlor, Julia (1990). "Cracks in the Glass Ceiling". USA Today, June 1.
Powell, Gary N. (1993). Women and Men in Management. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
Reuter, Andrea Shalal-Esa (1992). "US initiative aims to smash glass ceiling." The Financial Post. August 20: p.36.
Naisbitt, John and Patricia Aburdeen (1990). Megatrends 2000. New York: William Morrow. 217-219.
Powell, Gary N. and D. Anthony Butterfield (1994). "Investigating the Glass Ceiling Phenomenon: an empirical study of actual promotions to top management." Academy of Management Journal. 37(1): 68-86.
Richards, Rhonda(1992). "Cracks seen in glass ceiling." USA Today: August 11.
Shenhav, Y. (1992). "Entrance of blacks and women into managerial positions in scientific and engineering occupations: A longitudinal analysis." Academy of Management Journal. 35: 889-901.
United States Department of Labor (1995). Good for Business: Making full use of the nation 's human capital. Washington, D.C. (Also known as the Final Report of the Glass Ceiling Commission).
http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/library/e_archive/gov_reports/glassceiling/default.html?page=papers%2F1front
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