Sexual Harassment in Field work

I have witnessed and experienced the effect in archaeological field school and commercial archaeology settings. In 2008, when I reported having to listen to graphically violent misogynistic language to the interim P.I., she replied that if I wanted a career in field work, I’d just have to learn to live with it. And then responded to my request to be assigned to travel (the 2 hour daily round trip) in any field vehicle other than his by permanently assigning me to ride in his crew car. This was a contract filled predominantly by female employees led in the field by exclusively male crew chiefs who limited access to learning recording and documentation tasks to those women they were sleeping with. It’s fair to say that not only the sexism, sexual comments and sexual assualt itself, but also the gatekeeping by PIs, senior academics, etc, need to be cast light on and discussed openly.

Thanks so much to Holly Dunsworth and the excellent blog The Mermaid’s Tale for yesterday’s piece on the effect of sexual harassment on early career researchers in Paleoanthropology.  This is not an isolated incident by any means; see the 2013 SAFE study for more on this.

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