Programmed Inequality

by Marie Hicks

Book Reviews

  • @BernabeMacr Because I have studied the history of computing. Read @histoftech book Programmed Inequality; read When Computers Were Hunan by @dagrierLink to Tweet
  • @antirez Anyway, thank you for the backstory. I would observe that your POV expressed therein is as naive today as it was then, for it ignores the pervasive, systemic sexism that persists within the industry. Take a look at Mar Hicks’s book “Programmed Inequality” for more.Link to Tweet
  • Hey @PapricusMaximus, I see that you deleted your tweet directed toward me (but us old guys know the Internet Never Forgets). In the spirit of being constructive - and since you label yourself as a hobbyist historian - I suggest you read this book: to Tweet

About Book

In 1944, Britain led the world in electronic computing. By 1974, the British computer industry was all but extinct. Marie Hicks's Programmed inequality explores the story of labor feminization and gendered technocracy that undercut British efforts to computerize. Women were a hidden engine of growth in high technology from World War II to the 1960s. As computing experienced a gender flip, becoming male-identified in the 1960s and 1970s, labor problems grew into structural ones, and gender discrimination caused the nation's largest computer user - the civil service and sprawling public sector -- to make decisions that were disastrous for the British computer industry and the nation as a whole. Programmed inequality shows how the disappearance of women from the field has grave macroeconomic consequences for Britain, and why the United States risks repeating those errors in the twenty-first century.