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Sheryl Sandberg: I’m embarrassed I never said I was a feminist before

The new book from Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, "Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead," generated a controversy over the rigor of her politics before it even went on sale (which it does today). Salon spoke with her to discuss the book, its reaction, and her own evolution as a feminist. Here's an abridged transcript of that conversation, edited for clarity and brevity.

So what’s your reaction to all of this?

[deadpan] Reaction to what?

Even before many people read the book, there’s been so much meta-reaction. What do you think, watching this from the center of it?

On a serious note, what I think is that these issues run deep. This is serious stuff. This is about who we are as a people and our expectations for our lives and our partnerships and our families, and I think people are really passionate about this. What I’m extremely worried about is stagnation and apathy, and the fact that women have had the same percentage of the leadership jobs in our country for ten years and people don’t seem to notice or care. If this current debate gets us out of that, and makes us wake up and realize this, I think it’s a really good thing.

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