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Women and Politics

An International Perspective

2d edition
Since the 1960s, the increasing involvement of women in mainstream politics and the impact of the "second wave" of feminism have given rise to an enormous volume of writing on women and politics. Drawing on material from a wide range of capitalist, state-socialist, and Third World countries, Women and Politics provides a comprehensive introduction to, summary, and analysis of this body of writing. This second edition has been greatly expanded and revised in light of recent debates and changes in women’s political situation in the economic recession of the 1980s. Randall examines the increasingly extensive data available on women’s political participation and the chief factors that obstruct or encourage it. An entirely new section on women in the Third World has been added. Finally, Randall provides an up-to-date analysis of contemporary feminism as a political movement, its impact on policy in the 1970s, and the changing prospects for both in the 1980s.

369 pages | 6.00 x 9.00 | © 1982, 1987

Political Science: Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, and International Relations

Women's Studies

Table of Contents

Preface to the First Edition
Preface to the Second Edition
What is feminism?
What is politics?
1. Women’s place in society
Male dominance or patriarchy?
Anatomy as destiny
Explanations emphasising culture or ideology
Male dominance and the economy
Women’s place: change and diversity
The inevitability of male dominance?
2. Women’s political behaviour
The extent of women’s participation in grass-roots politics
Women’s political attitudes
Determinants of women’s political behaviour
3. Women in political elites
A minority presence
Women in the European Parliament
Political parties
National governments
Unions and other interest organisations
Why so few?
Strategies for women?
A distinctive contribution?
4. How politics affects women
Politics and women’s status in Britain
Explaining policy towards women: a comparative approach
Policies in Sweden
The Third World: colonialism, nationalism, and ’development’
Policies under state socialism
5. The politics of the women’s movement
The ’first wave’ of feminism
The origins of contemporary feminism
Women’s liberation in the United States
Women’s liberation in Britain
The movement elsewhere
A crisis in the women’s movement?
Movement membership and heterogeneity
The tyranny of structurelessness
Finding the right strategy—with the Left?
6. Feminism and policy-making
Abortion rights
Abortion reform in Britain
Abortion reform in the United States
Abortion reforms: some comparisons
Equal rights policy-making
Equal employment policy-making: comparative perspectives
Feminism and policy-making in the 1980s
Notes for further reading

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