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Women Transforming Politics: An Alternative Reader [Paperback]

by Cathy Cohen, Kathy Jones, Joan C. Tronto
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

July 1, 1997 0814715583 978-0814715581 First Printing

As the largest political constituency in the United States, women present a radical challenge to the foundations of our political system. The integration of women into political life fundamentally changes the nature of American politics, necessitating a reassessment of the definition of politics, the nature of political action and the purpose of public life.

Women Transforming Politics: An Alternative Reader redefines the field of women and politics. By displacing the experiences of white, middle and upper class elite women as central, this volume brings to light the lives and actions of poor and working class women, women of color, and others defined as marginal. Covering topics as diverse as community organizing by South Asian women in New York, the governing styles of Chicana/Latina elected officials in California, the labor struggles of working-class women in Tennessee, the participation pattern of poor African-American women in Ohio, and the challenge of reproductive and sexual rights in international feminist politics, each essay provides a new and more expansive way to think about politics.

Contributors representing a wide range of professions including political science, sociology, history, law, grassroots organizing and cultural work challenge us to expand the range of experiences and acts considered political. Combining classic essays by renowned figures with groundbreaking work by a new generation of scholars, the publication of Women Transforming Politics will change forever the study of politics in the United States.

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Women Transforming Politics: An Alternative Reader + Elusive Equality: Women's Rights, Public Policy, and the Law
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

This collection of 33 articles contains pieces by activists as well as work by scholars in economics, political science, history, sociology, and African American, Asian American, American, and women's studies. The essays, focusing on U.S. women, attempt to look beyond simplistic "gender gap" analysis by taking an expansive view of political activity and by emphasizing the experiences of marginalized groups. We find papers on Mexican migrant workers, Chinese women garment workers, Chicana/Latina elected officials in California, black women in state legislatures, disabled women, gay women, rural women, Native American women, and the black urban underclass. The editors?who teach at Yale University, San Diego State University, and Hunter College?have arranged the papers in five sections, although the organization is not completely clear. As with most collections, the articles vary in sophistication, utility, and approach. The book's likeliest use will be in academic courses in women's studies and political science, where its breadth will be particularly welcome.?Cynthia Harrison, George Washington Univ., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.


"This exciting collection not only documents the varied organizing experiences of women in American politics, it provides original and provocative analyses of the challenge owmen present to mainstream ideas of political representation, the role of the state, and the nature of power. The scope and depth of this volume are remarkable, and the prose lucid enought to make this bookd widely accessible. A must-read for all interested in women's political empowerment."

-Urvashi Vaid,author of Virtual Equality: The Mainstreaming of Gay and Lesbian Liberation

"This innovative book illustrates both the complexity of women's activism and how that activism must transform our understanding of politics. It is an invaluable resource for the courses in U.S. politics and political participation that, at the same time, introduces the work of exciting young scholars."

-Martha Ackelsberg,Smith College

"Expanding the boundaries of conventional political studies, Women Transforming Politics provides perspectives and analyses which are vital for a truly democratic society."

-Joy James,author of Resisting State Violence and Transcending the Talented Tenth

Product Details

  • Paperback: 612 pages
  • Publisher: NYU Press; First Printing edition (July 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814715583
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814715581
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 7 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,497,897 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Photo by Dan Dry

Cathy J. Cohen is the David and Mary Winton Green Professor of Political Science and the College at the University of Chicago.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great articles and new perspectives May 19, 2000
If you are a serious feminist, you NEED this book. It is a truly excellent collection of articles by scholars who span the whole women's movement, with all of its strength in women's communities of color.
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