The Modernist composer Anton Webern predicted that mailmen on their rounds would one day whistle his atonal non-melodies. Three-quarters of a century later I see the following in a 2006 report from the National Academy of Sciences. The report labors under the title Beyond Bias and Barriers: Fulfilling the Potential of Women in Academic Science and Engineering:

Women are a small portion of the science and engineering faculty members at research universities, and they typically receive fewer resources and less support than their male colleagues… . It is not lack of talent, but unintentional biases and outmoded institutional structures that are hindering the access and advancement of women.

These two observations have in common a certain view of human nature—a view that, beginning about a century ago, colon- ized large regions of both the arts and...

 

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