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  #21  
Old 07 September 2007, 10:08 PM
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It's possible that the letter is not real, but assuming that it is, we have to remember that we don't have the original letter that Miss Ford sent in order to get this reply. We don't know how old she was or what she put forward as her qualifications in her letter to them--this looks like a form letter with her name added at the top, so I'm guessing that they had a lot of young girls sending them the same sort of questions and it was just easier to send them a stock reply. The poster of the letter states that she found work as an animator just a few years later so the sexism in the letter didn't ultimately hold her back.
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  #22  
Old 08 September 2007, 04:14 PM
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Disney

Quote:
Originally Posted by nancyfancypants View Post
Am I the only one doubting the authenticity of this letter?
I tend to take an Occam's razor approach: If someone were going to go to the trouble of faking something like this, why make it so mundane? If the intent were to create something satirical or outrageous, there are much better ways it could have been done.

- snopes
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  #23  
Old 10 September 2007, 02:52 PM
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It seems Mary Ford wasn't the only one to receive such a letter.

Miss Francis Brewer received one in 1938, also signed by Mary Cleave.

The Disney Artist Tryout book includes this quote:
Quote:
All inking and painting of celluloids, and all tracing done in the Studio is perfomed exclusively by a large staff of girls known as Inkers and Painters... This is the only department in the Disney Studio open to women artists.
This article talks about how some women got to move up to animator during WWII because many men were serving in the armed forces.

Gibbie
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  #24  
Old 10 September 2007, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapax Legomena View Post
It's possible that the letter is not real, but assuming that it is, we have to remember that we don't have the original letter that Miss Ford sent in order to get this reply. We don't know how old she was or what she put forward as her qualifications in her letter to them--this looks like a form letter with her name added at the top, so I'm guessing that they had a lot of young girls sending them the same sort of questions and it was just easier to send them a stock reply.
Sending the same response to every young girl who applied doesn't make it any less sexist.


Quote:
The poster of the letter states that she found work as an animator just a few years later so the sexism in the letter didn't ultimately hold her back.
Ah, but that may have been due, not to a lack of sexism, but to a lack of qualified men:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibbie View Post
This article talks about how some women got to move up to animator during WWII because many men were serving in the armed forces.
Women moved into many traditionally male occupations during the war, and in most cases were promptly moved back out of them when the men came home.
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  #25  
Old 10 September 2007, 04:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
I tend to take an Occam's razor approach: If someone were going to go to the trouble of faking something like this, why make it so mundane? If the intent were to create something satirical or outrageous, there are much better ways it could have been done.

- snopes
True, true. There are just things about it that bother me. For instance, if Disney was a sexist outfit, I doubt that they would have had a woman sign any piece of correspondence at all. Even if they weren't a sexist organization, it seems odd that a woman would have been in a position to do so in 1938. Also, the formatting is improper, so that leads me to believe that someone who doesn't know proper letter format fabricated the letter.
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  #26  
Old 10 September 2007, 04:34 PM
Christie Christie is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nancyfancypants View Post
True, true. There are just things about it that bother me. For instance, if Disney was a sexist outfit, I doubt that they would have had a woman sign any piece of correspondence at all. Even if they weren't a sexist organization, it seems odd that a woman would have been in a position to do so in 1938.
Most major companies were sexist back then. At least by our standards. That didn't mean though that women could not have fairly senior positions in certain specific departments within the organization.
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  #27  
Old 10 September 2007, 05:02 PM
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Disney

Quote:
Originally Posted by nancyfancypants View Post
For instance, if Disney was a sexist outfit, I doubt that they would have had a woman sign any piece of correspondence at all. Even if they weren't a sexist organization, it seems odd that a woman would have been in a position to do so in 1938.
Sending/signing rejection letters to (female) applicants might very well have been considered a task too menial for male personnel and was therefore relegated to a female clerical worker. Why bother involving important men in the chore of rejecting applicants who are being dismissed out of hand, without any consideration of their qualifications? (Also note that the letter is "from" Walt Disney Productions; the woman who signed it did so merely as the preparer of the letter, not as a decision-maker.)

Quote:
Also, the formatting is improper, so that leads me to believe that someone who doesn't know proper letter format fabricated the letter.
There's nothing "improper" about the format of the letter, other than that it looks a little odd because the margins have to accommodate the artwork.

- snopes
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  #28  
Old 10 September 2007, 05:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
There's nothing "improper" about the format of the letter, other than that it looks a little odd because the margins have to accommodate the artwork.

- snopes
I was referring to the fact that there's no address, just a name, city and state.
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  #29  
Old 10 September 2007, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nancyfancypants View Post
I was referring to the fact that there's no address, just a name, city and state.
Which was not uncommon 70 years ago. That was long before the advent of ZIP codes, and in some places (especially smaller towns) residences didn't necessarily have discrete addresses, or they weren't necessary (since everyone in the town, including the postmaster, knew where so-and-so lived).

Again, I would apply Occam's razor: Howl likely is it that someone would fake a piece of business correspondence and forget something as obvious at the address of the recipient? An error of that nature would much more likely be one of anachronism, such as including a ZIP code (even though they hadn't been invented yet) or using the name of a town that didn't exist back in 1938.

- snopes
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  #30  
Old 10 September 2007, 07:55 PM
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Back then I do not believe that any body would have considered it sexist. It was just the way things were at that point in time.
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  #31  
Old 10 September 2007, 08:02 PM
Ryda Wong, EBfCo. Ryda Wong, EBfCo. is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8Ball View Post
Back then I do not believe that any body would have considered it sexist. It was just the way things were at that point in time.
Right....

We weren't discussing the issues of gender and employment in that era, but rather the outsanding sexism of the letter, which isn't dependent on era.
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  #32  
Old 10 September 2007, 08:13 PM
Christie Christie is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8Ball View Post
Back then I do not believe that any body would have considered it sexist. It was just the way things were at that point in time.
I'm not sure if the term sexist would have been used back then but I can assure you some people would still have considered it unfair. To say the least.
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  #33  
Old 12 September 2007, 01:29 AM
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I first I thought it said "sexiest" instead of sexist...there goes my mind...in the gutter again
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