Claire Evan’s brings to light the issues around binary ways of thinking in the field of design. In her talk series, she gives an example of how gender can impact our perspective of how “hard” or “soft” certain careers in our industry are and perpetuate this idea that certain jobs are more valuable than others. So, if we can’t shift how society feels about our careers overnight, or perhaps even within our lifetime, how can we continue to practice in a field where we are seen as less?
Can designers still embrace femininity while still promoting gender fluidity? And how does this mantra manifest itself in our work to push the needle for all of design?
Think of the pink packaged “Just for Her” BIC pen design flop that was produced just for women in 2012, how could we rethink that design flop in 2020?
In Allison’s Parrish’s talk, she also exposes the tech industry as being male centric and how that originated from hacker culture. By not addressing gender, we see how men are positioned to benefit from the systems in place and the unfortunate consequences of leaving others out. She then goes on to provide suggestions on how we can question our ways of thinking and work towards inclusivity. I’d be curious to know if the hackers of this generation still hold Levy’s ethics as the gold standard of living and working or if the community has evolved in response to the Me Too and Black Lives Matter movements.
In the midst of a pandemic, what new considerations should we be making as designers in addition to gender and race? And how will these changes in thinking impact the next generation of designers?
I’ve purchased these cards to help guide me towards a more inclusive way of thinking about design. Check them out!