Rachida Dati resigned her job as France's Justice Minister. She's going to pursue a place in the European Parliament as an MEP.
Her departure is all too reminiscent of the times I've seen one colleague and one boss lose their jobs shortly after returning from maternity leave.
Coincidence? Maybe they didn't lose their jobs because of being mothers, but it probably hadn't helped to be so ... noticeable.... feminine... or in Dati's case, to have an 'abrasive management style'. What a loaded expression that is.
However, I raise the topic of Dati again because I read a Hadley Freeman article today in the Guardian where she suggested that women should stop 'looking at other women in a purely narcissistic, deeply emotional manner'.
Apparently, 'only women' publicly express the view that 'women have to work harder in all areas of life and that so it's only natural that what other women do impacts on the expectations of other women'. I can't believe 'only women' have this view. Even if men aren't talking about it, this doesn't mean women are mistaken in holding this belief.
Before I go on - I need to let off steam in the manner of a pre-menstrual woman who just found an empty milk bottle in the fridge. It irks me to be told that any criticism of Dati's maternity leave decisions are inevitably expressed in a deeply emotional manner. Does anyone else think that phrase carries a lot of baggage?
It is incredibly interesting (to me at least) when a women in a senior public position has a baby and decides to return to work after five days. Just as it was interesting to many men when Steve Jobs decided, after some hesitation, to take time off work for health reasons. No one was hysterical - I was interested because it allowed me to reflect on the decisions I make in my own life.
Leaving aside the issue of celeb magazines where Hadley rightly points out the frustration of seeing women simultaneously lauded for losing baby weight while encouraging readers to hate them for their willpower and access to personal trainers, women should talk about other women in public life.
Why? Well there's not that many of them. There's something holding women back - whether it's in ourselves or in the workplace... or even in the media's perception of us.
We need to exhaust the discussion about work, success (whatever that means to each of us), careers, glass ceilings, women on the board and motherhood. Because until we are so familiar with the issues and the solutions there will always be petty prejudices and obstacles to equitable work/life opportunities.
As I read her article, I'm not entirely sure who she's berating. Is it me and others like me who have blogged and talked about Dati or is she furious with the press and women's magazines?
At least with a blog, I know I can get the last word.