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"Having It All" Debate Convinced Me To Stop Saying "Having It All"

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The term “having it all” makes women seems “piggy” and elitist.

By Anne-Marie Slaughter (Contributor, The Atlantic)

For everyone out there who cares about gender equality, work-family balance, or however else we choose to frame the complex debate that my article “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All” has (re)ignited, let’s start by agreeing on one thing: Let’s ban the term “mommy wars” forever. A more patronizing, trivializing label would be hard to find. So let us all commit to never, ever use “mommy” as an adjective. No “mommy wars” and no “mommy track”. And while we’re at it, let’s also abandon “catfight” in favor of “debate, conversation, engagement with an important issue.”

Rebecca Traister has convinced me to stop using the term “having it all,” in a thoughtful and quite brilliant piece she wrote for Salon arguing that the term makes women seem “piggy” and elitist. For my generation, women who came of age in the 1970s and entered the workforce in the 1980s, “having it all” simply meant that women should be able to have both careers and families in the same measure and to the same degree that men do.

» Read the full article on The Atlantic.

Photo credit: Anne-Marie Slaughter tweet.