When I was researching the gender disparities between the representation of action heroines and heroes in film, I found that by overwhelming consensus, women are overtly sexualised or belittled when they’ve assumed roles of power.
Men either desire or fear a strong woman, and both can lead to violent responses. This is also apparent in the “real world”. The actions of these women and this article itself will invite plenty of commentary from gammons and flat-out misogynists.
I’m sure that this study is just one of what will be many reflections on the pandemic. I don’t think this study should be taken as “gospel” or an attempt to pit the sexes against one another. I think, instead, that it’s a useful time to look at the way that people have been guided through the COVID-19 crisis and the qualities which distinguish positive leadership from negative.
It sure is nice to see some acclaim for female leadership where the emphasis has been more on dialogue, increasing awareness, early action on prevention measures and being empathetic towards the plight of the general public during the crisis. It is a welcome change to reading headlines about egotistical, privileged fuckwits whose decisions are informed by self-preservation as opposed to for the benefits for the collective.