Female Lawyers with Masculine Names Fare Better

A new pair of studies suggest that women with masculine names fare better in legal careers than women with feminine names.

The findings, published in the American Law and Economics Review, indicate that a female lawyers with masculine names are more likely to:

  • be appointed as judges and
  • earn more money

than female lawyers with feminine names. Not only that, but these likelihoods become stronger as the “masculinity” of the name increases. (A gender-neutral name has the weakest effect, while a name used almost exclusively for males has the strongest effect.)

Co-author Bentley Coffey was so swayed by the outcome of his own study and he and his wife — who happens to be lawyer — named their daughter Collins.

And now, some questions for you:

Would this study make you think twice about giving your daughter a feminine name?

Does Collins make you think of a cocktail? Because it certainly makes me think of a cocktail. (And makes me curious to know whether they’re using Coffey as the surname, because, if so, that would be quite a thirst-quenching name.)

Source: What’s in a name? More bucks for women, studies say

4 thoughts on “Female Lawyers with Masculine Names Fare Better

  1. I don’t care for masculine names for girls no matter what. But if I had that concern about her doing better with such a name, I might give a daughter a strong family name or other surname as her middle name — as with the CNN reporter
    Alma Campbell Brown. Too, it seems to me that most classic female names — Catherine, Margaret, Jane, Anne, Kate, etc. — would do better professionally, generally speaking, than more ‘frivolous’ names like Brandy, Misty, etc.

  2. I strongly disagree with this article. I personally think Collins is horrendous, and what if Collins decides she has a passion for ballet and not lawyering? Do ballarinas fare better if they have overtly, frilly, feminine names like Seraphina or Arabella?

  3. Collins makes me think that “Collie” would be the logical nickname. I guess if she likes big, friendly dogs that’s good.

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