Affective Labor

03.23.14

Sex in Silicon Valley

"Women's work" gets devalued in the office and between the sheets.

In an essay for Model Culture View, write Kate Losse breakdown Silicon Valley's failed attempt at including, and most importantly, fairly validating "women's work." With a often times humorous approach, Losse breaks down the stereotypical "Silicon Valley startup founder"—white, young, male (duh), unattached, devilish, wearing a hoodie or other active gear, and sporting the swoop hairstyle. These men are often labeled "rockstars" and "ballers"—they are assertive and intelligent. They are also, according to Losse, sexually entitled. Sexually aggressive undertones run rampant throughout Silicon Valley ads and slogans. Given their wealth and intelligence, these young men expect, nay need, a woman to satisfy their sexual needs so they can be their most productive selfs. Women, of course, get pinned as groupies, needing to provide the affective labor demanded but never compensated of taking care of Silicon Valley men that can't even be bothered to commit to a relationship, given their strenuous startup gigs. Not only are women limited access to startup culture guy by virtue of having less opportunity in STEM, but even within relationships they labor is devalued. Losse ends with some suggestions to future Silicon Valley ventures—pay equally and pay fairly.​