glass ceiling

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
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English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Etymology[edit]

glass (indicating transparency, to allude to the often unacknowledged nature of the limitation) + ceiling (suggesting a barrier to upward advancement)

This etymology is incomplete. You can help Wiktionary by elaborating on the origins of this term.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (file)

Noun[edit]

glass ceiling (plural glass ceilings)

  1. (idiomatic) An unwritten, uncodified barrier to further promotion or progression, in employment and elsewhere, for a member of a specific demographic group.
    • 2007 Jan. 5, "Six thousand women missing from boardrooms, politics and courts," The Guardian (UK), p. 1:
      Women are “woefully” under-represented in parliament, the courts and the boardroom, with new research showing that the glass ceiling is still holding back 6,000 women from the top 33,000 jobs in Britain.
    • 2017 September 19, Jennifer Szalai, “The Education of Ellen Pao”, in New York Times[1]:
      [] it was the genteel chauvinism of the enlightened elites at Kleiner Perkins that carried with it the sting of betrayal. They promised her a meritocracy and gave her a glass ceiling instead: “It just wasn’t fair.”

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Italian[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from English glass ceiling.

Noun[edit]

glass ceiling m (invariable)

  1. glass ceiling