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Gov. Palin's pioneering streak

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Being a powerful woman poses special difficulties: Americans may pretend to enjoy (or aspire to) racial blindness, but not gender blindness. Women leaders must forge personal strategies for combining “feminine” with “powerful” even while living in a society like ours that pays lip service to the idea that gender doesn’t matter anymore.

Newsflash: Of course it does. Sex is one of the more consistently powerful forces in the human psyche, and both men and women notice whether someone is female or male.

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