Education is said to be one of the most important aspects of our life. We are propelled to school from the age of 4 at least. And then College for graduation. The main reason we’re sent to school is to make us a doctor or engineer or to get a job. But how can you say that without education you’re nothing when the world is changed by some of the entrepreneurs who didn’t even have a college degree.
It took 10 years for Lady Gaga to get her feet off the ground, but when it did, she had it all. The charisma, the talent, the branding. Then it took her 10 years to find a near nemesis. In my unpopular opinion, a great example of this is the way Ava Max - a near Gaga copy cat- has followed a fast route to fame. If you just look at the similarities in the music, the blonde hair and “monster” branding. It’s almost as if Ava Max is taking direct inspiration from Gaga’s career and implementing it into her own to gain notoriety. Sadly enough, it’s working.
A long, long time ago, I was a child actress. It was the late 1950s to the early 1960s. I actually worked on shows such as Bonanza, (with Chuck McCann), Rifleman (with Johnny Crawford and Chuck Connors), Andy Griffith, Bozo the Clown, etc., along with commercials like "Chatty Cathy" (with Maureen McCormick), "Actionware" (with Dian Van Patten), etc. That was such a fun time for me.
A decade ago, the very idea of being able to hire a celebrity would have been deemed laughable. For so long, Hollywood A-Lister's, iconic musicians, and legendary sportspeople have lived and worked in their own "celebrity bubble." Loyal fans would wait in their masses to catch a brief glance of their idol. Queuing for hours on end, whatever the weather for a quick sighting of their own personal demagogue. All a bit ridiculous if you ask me, but whatever floats your boat.
"Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth..."
Being in your mid-20s is hell, especially if you have any kind of big dreams. As your friends start to get their dream jobs and generally settle down in houses you have no idea how they paid for, you can begin to think that’s it’s already too late for you to live your dream life. Before you down a whole bottle of something clear and unbelievably alcoholic and resign yourself to a life of shitty retail jobs, however, read the following. Some of the world’s best-known faces and figures throughout history weren’t doing what they wanted to do in their 20s. You too can write about a boy wizard, become a punk sex goddess or discover the laws of gravity!
Most people can think of one or two people who have gone from being major names in their industry to becoming people infamous for failure. After all, it happens in Hollywood all the time - think Bill O'Reilly, Bill Cosby, or Sinead O'Connor for starters.
Sheryl Sandberg is the Chief Operating Officer of Facebook and in 2013 she published Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. Her book was met with both profound praise and critique—from women. She is, after all, a woman in leadership with significant power. As such, it seems that women should be excited to hear about her tips for success so that we can be just like her. However, her book is more of a self-help book than the feminist manifesto Sandberg herself touted it to be (Sandberg 2013; Taylor 2017). More importantly, it should not be considered the cornerstone of the new feminist wave. This essay will argue that Lean In is a net loss for feminism. I will first discuss the positive impact that Sandberg and Lean In deserve credit for. After, however, I will argue for the negative impact of her book with a discussion of Risman’s (1998) idea of the three levels of gender and the capitalistic incentives behind the marketing of Lean In. I will finish with some ideas on how Lean In could have been better, and how the new LeanIn.org community can perhaps correct some of the book’s mistakes.