Reading List || The Financial Times: Power With Grace ~ Christine Lagarde

13/12/2011 § Leave a comment

Christine Lagarde.  Image via the FT.

When Christine Lagarde took the reins at the IMF from embattled and embarrassed Dominique Strauss-Kahn, I will admit that aside from the remarkable milestones she represents — the first female managing director of the IMF, first female finance minister of a G7 country, first female head of international law firm Baker & McKenzie — there is something about her style that resonates deeply with me.  Here I use the term “style” loosely, as I do not specifically mean her manner of dress or hairstyle.  While I do love both, it has more to do with what Gillian Tett calls her “power with grace” in Tett’s recent article on Lagarde for the Women of 2011: Special Edition of the Financial Times:

But Lagarde is also being watched – as a potent female watershed. Never before has a woman held such a powerful position in global finance; the world of money has hitherto been dominated by men, not just inside banks but in bureaucracies too. Lagarde herself has often lamented this pattern, joking, for example, that the financial crisis might have been different if there had been “Lehman Sisters” and pointing out that the euro’s “fragile” foundations were created by its “founding fathers”, not mothers, since “regrettably, there was no woman at the table at the time.” Or, as she recently told me on the telephone: “I wish that there were more women in finance – I think it would be much healthier. We don’t know if it would have been different with more women [in 2008] but my intuition tells me it possibly might have been.”

Read the article here.

And from Forbes, Lagarde talks about being a lawyer, gender, diversity and the role of the IMF in the global economic crisis.  Especially interesting to hear the reasons she prefers to use the title “Chairman.”

Also on the list:

The Smithsonian: Unflinching Portraits of Pearl Harbor Survivors

Business of Fashion: Digital Scorecard | Valentino Garavani Virtual Museum

LIFE Magazine, 17 Jan 1969:  While Burton romances Rex, Liz weighs her power and her future

The diamond is 33.9 carats and when I first saw it I said, “It can’t be real.”  And Mrs. Burton belted back happily, “You bet your sweet ass it’s real.  It’s the Krupp Diamond.”

Style Icon: Amelia Earhart

30/11/2011 § 8 Comments

“The best things of mankind are as useless as Amelia Earhart’s adventure.  Such persons…prove that man is no mere creature of his habits, no mere automaton, no mere cog in the collective machine but that in the dust of which he is made there is also fire, lighted now and then by great winds from the sky.”  –Walter Lippmann

“Please know that I am aware of the hazards. I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be a challenge to others.”  –Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart (July 24, 1897 – disappeared in 1937) is arguably the most famous aviatrix in history.  The first woman to cross the Atlantic solo, and only the second person to do it successfully, the notoriety from Earhart’s many feats in the air were trumped only by the mystery surrounding the loss of her plane while she attempted to circumnavigate the globe in 1937.  (You can read the article about her disappearance that ran in the July 19, 1937 issue of LIFE Magazine here, it also has a great photo-log of the trip.  It’s been my goal to find this issue to add to my collection, but no such luck yet.)

I have long been an admirer of Earhart’s adventuresome spirit, tenacity and courage — and also her wardrobe.  Her staples: a perfect pleated trouser, a crisp dress shirt, a pretty scarf, a well-worn bomber jacket and hardworking boots.  Her signature elements: a bit of tousled hair, a scrubbed-clean face, a devil-may-care attitude, and an endearingly scrunched-up Mona Lisa smile.

“Adventure is worthwhile in itself.”  –Amelia Earhart

Smithsonian curator Dorothy Cochrane and aircraft restorer Karl Heinzel discuss early aviation, aeronautical technology and Earhart’s Lockheed Vega, the plane she crossed the Atlantic in, which is on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Where Am I?

You are currently browsing entries tagged with Smithsonian at Quite Continental.

%d bloggers like this: