Bad teachers vs good role-models etc.
I still remember my high-school basic-electronics class, where the slimeball oldschool teacher had the class memorize colors of resistors by using a well-known traditional mnemonic jingle - this is the version that we were taught:
"Bad Boys Rape Often Young Girls But Violet Gave Willingly"
Not surprising that sort of attitude didn't attract girls in droves, for a variety of reasons including at least two flaws in the basic premises of the mnemonic itself. In that particular class, I was literally the only girl in a class of about 30 male students, which made me feel like a freak at first. The other students were cool (nice), just normal people, but some of the old-guard *teachers* had attitude problems and they tried to pass on their worthless/harmful attitudes to new generations. (I guess I went to bad schools, up until college anyway.)
I stuck it out because, at the time, I liked the subject matter itself well enough to ignore traditional dumbf**k attitudes, but more sensible ;) girls stayed far away from such classes.
Not everyone would be as motivated though - I have a bit of a stubborn streak.
"People who are not interested in the subject of IT are already primed to dislike that subject."
Possibly, but it's also true that many people have never even *heard* of IT (it's not exactly a common acronym among the general populace), therefore such people would have no preconceived ideas about IT one way or the other.
"women who are in IT and science often show a self confidence to not be so influenced by the superficial concerns of the Histrionics."
Good points, what you wrote about Histrionics.
My dad (who was an excessively-nice-looking guy and an extreme workaholic), always said that "Anything that's popular, is probably no damn good" (partly there he was referring to *himself* in his younger rakish years - he certainly had no lack of women's companionship before marrying at a relatively older age), and then he'd launch off into stories of lemmings and "herd mentality", complete with scathing denunciations of the fashion industry, "face-paint for primitive mating-rituals" (his term for women's makeup), recreational-drug users, draft-dodgers and "hippies", "new math" etc... he was very opinionated about some things!
(Note that this was many years before personal computers, so his anti-lemming stories were *not* related to any modern OS-based lemming diatribes that one may have heard, y'know the usual Windows vs SomeOtherOS thing.)
Point being, it's not surprising that a kid who's heard that sort of thing zillions of times since infancy, might end up with "non-traditional" career interests.
I suspect that many other women in non-traditional lines of work, probably also had some similar strong influences in their lives that gave them the idea that you don't necessarily have to do what society or "peers" (lemmings again) tell you to do. Be interested in things for their own merits, not because of following fashion/style/bad-peer-pressure or whatever. If something interests you, then go for it, work hard, do a good job, be successful at it. If despite your best efforts you can't hack it (no pun intended), then find something else that you *are* good at and work hard at that too.
Having a workaholic mentor/role-model probably has something to do with it, too, because it makes one less inclined to be discouraged at going against the tide (dealing with naysayers etc.).
A lot of traditionally male jobs, are in fact *difficult*, either mentally or physically - that's probably one of the reasons that the pay is often higher. Many people - men as well as women - aren't well-qualified for those jobs and/or aren't interested in that kind of work (whatever it happens to be) in the first place. People (men or women) who get into those lines of work just on a lark, and who don't apply themselves or who spend their time goofing off, are apt to fail or be mediocre. If there is something 'unusual' about the person, their failure will stick in people's memory more.
I once worked in an all-girl shop (quite a change of environment/culture from the usual mostly-male workplaces I'd worked at previously). The boss made an exception one time and she hired a male. He turned out to be lazy *and* a thief ($$$$) and he got fired, and ever after that, the boss swore up and down that she would never ever again hire another man because she'd hired that *one* man that *one* time and he was no good (that bosslady had good technical skills, but she wasn't very people-smart). She kept her word for the entire time she was in charge of that shop, another 4 or 5 years or so. "One bad apple"... I see similar things with regard to mostly-male workplaces that dare to hire females - some of the females are good workers, some aren't, but the bad ones stand out more because they were already different to start with, thus reinforcing already-existing stereotypes or whatever.
Just my long-winded ramblin' two cents there :)