Ambiguous Adventure

History 1610

October 6, 2003

In Cheikh Hamidou Kane’s novel, Ambiguous Adventure he addresses many problems. Such as the cultural and social choices that Africans faced during the colonial era, how education played a major role in the European colonization area. The one that is most surprising is the role of the Most Royal Lady. She is highly respected by everyone, including the male leaders in the Diallo family. But her role is very unusual, she is a woman and women of this time had no place in a leadership position.

More and more women are rising to the leadership challenge, even in some of the most male-dominated industries. The increase in the number of women attending university, in the workplace or starting their own business has demonstrated to men who own businesses that women can be both managers and mothers, thus showing their male counterpart that women can in fact "do it all". This paper will show the history of women, as well as the challenges they face. In conjunction with the Most Royal Lady in Kane’s novel, the leadership styles of women will also be discussed.

A number of events have occurred over the last twenty-five years or so that have resulted in the rise of the female in the work-for-pay world. Beginning in the mid-1970\'s, women began going to business school and earning their Master\'s of Business Administration and, as a result, building on that education and gaining work experience. The days of the one income family are over. Females need to be armed with a university or college degree to be a contributor to this century\'s model of the family unit and in this time of "education inflation", the demand for higher education is growing at a staggering rate. In the corporate sector, the generation of women who entered the corporate world two to three decades ago have blazed the trail now followed by ever-growing numbers of women. Just as in Kane’s novel, women whom hold leadership positions will be highly respected.

While women continue to make progressive strides toward equality, few have risen to the highest positions-leading companies to the new millennium. Fortunately, women can now demand equal treatment in their respective organizations as a result of the aforementioned changes in history. Many women in African culture still have set backs, and are unable to demand equal treatment. There is a vast amount of evidence that women tend to occupy less powerful, lower paid and lower status organizational positions than men. These divisions not only occur vertically, but on a horizontal scale as well. Women who seek to enter management level positions fight against stereotypes, discrimination, and myths, not to mention the fight to balance work and family. They have also been overwhelmed by unfamiliar products, skeptical clients or customers, guy talk, a scarcity of female associates and little or no empathy. Sheila Wellington, President of Catalyst, a non-profit organization for the advancement of women to corporate and professional leadership, said in a speech on October 23, 1996 to the Economic Club of Detroit in Detroit Michigan:

"Let me be clear, I believe that most obstacles to women\'s advancement to the top are not intentional, they are a result of unexamined assumptions about women\'s career interests
and of policies and practices that have existed unquestioned over time in the corporate culture. With real commitment to change, the situation
is remediable." (,)

Perhaps, the "glass ceiling" that women are under is not the intent of their male counterparts. I believe that it is the socialization of men and women in our society that has lead to this imbalance in the work force. But, somewhere along the line, men have to realize and acknowledge the socialization they have endured is creating much disharmony and discontent among their female colleagues.

There are many characteristics that women inherently possess that make them great leaders.

Women tend to handle juggling many tasks at the same time better than men do. Because women have traditionally been the primary caregiver in the home as well as taking care of the household chores, "juggling" or time management has become second nature to them. Although women are skilled in handling many tasks, studies have shown that women are for the most part, people-oriented, rather than task-oriented.