Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies (Paperback) book cover

Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies

By Lynn Prince Cooke

© 2011 – Routledge

296 pages

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Paperback: 9780415994422
pub: 2011-02-28
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pub: 2011-02-28
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About the Book

Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies offers an in-depth analysis of gender-class equality across six countries to reveal why gender-class equality in paid and unpaid work remains elusive, and what more policy might do to achieve better social and economic outcomes. This book is the first to meld cross-time with cross-country comparisons, link macro structures to micro behavior, and connect class with gender dynamics to yield fresh insights into where we are on the road to gender equality, why it varies across industrialized countries, and the barriers to further progress.


" In this truly unique text, Lynn Prince Cooke shows how gender and class inequalities intersect all depending on the nature of welfare state policy. It fills a massive void by adding a gender dimension to class analysis, and a class dimension to research on gender inequalities. It should be obligatory reading in courses on social policy, gender, and social stratification."

—Gosta Esping-Andersen, Sociology, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain

"Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies represents comparative scholarship at its best. The book will be invaluable as an example of best-practice research for students in gender, family, state and inequality courses, as well as providing a wealth of valuable historical and current information for scholars and anyone interested in understanding class and gender inequality in comparative context."

—Janeen Baxter, School of Social Science, University of Queensland, Australia

"Cooke no longer 'adds gender and stirs' it into the customary male-centered story of stratification, but rethinks the fundamental processes of inequality as being simultaneously about production and reproduction. Cooke succeeds so well in placing reproduction in an integrated and important position in the overall story of stratification that one might wonder how the old-style production-only accounts ever seemed plausible."

—Myra Marx Ferree, Sociology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA

"Two questions constitute the frontier of research on gender and the state: First, how do state policies shape gender inequalities and, second, how are gender and class inequalities intertwined? Lynn Cooke blends historical and comparative analyses to tackle both questions. The result is a lively book brimming with policy implications."

—Jane Gornick, Political Science and Sociology, City University of New York Graduate Center, USA

"This interesting, useful, and provocative book is unique in using historical, longitudinal, and comparative cross-cultural data to provide a new model for understanding persistent gender inequalities. I look forward to drawing on the theoretical and methodological approach, and substantive material in teaching on gender, families and social policy."

—Janet Holland, Social Research, London South Bank University, UK

"A myriad of detailed, painstakingly collected historical facts are combined with complex arguments and integrated accounts of social policy origins and developments across six societies on three continents in this insightful book."

—Sonja Drobnic, University of Hamburg, in American Journal of Sociology

"[Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies] goes beyond the narrower focus taken by the majority of comparative studies in political economy and opens our perspective to the broader web of class and gender inequities."

—Angelika Von Wahl, Lafayette College, in Gender & Society

"Scholars interested in both the complexity and the resilience of inequalities in contemporary societies will find much food for thought in this broadly comparative investigation by Lynn Prince Cooke."

—Mary Beth Mills, Colby College, in Contemporary Sociology

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Gender-Class Equality Over Time. 1.1 Introduction. 1.2 The state and institutional equality frames. 1.3 The country cases: Policy effects on class v gender equality. 1.4 The resilience of inequality within its institutional frame. 1.5 Book overview. Chapter 2 Paid and Unpaid Work in Context. 2.1 Introduction. 2.2 Gender differences in labor supply and demand. 2.3 The state and the labor market. 2.4 The state and a gendered division of household labor. 2.5 So what happened to the gender revolution? 2.6 Gender-class equality in post-industrial economies. 2.7 Summary: Policy paths and gender-class equality. Chapter 3 Population Policies and Group Divides. 3.1 Introduction. 3.2 19th Century expansion and women’s bodies. 3.3 19th Century immigration policies. 3.4 Post-war family policies. 3.5 Immigration policies in the post-war economic recovery. 3.6 Reproduction in the "new" global economy. 3.7 Immigration in the "new" global economy. 3.8 New world, old social order. Chapter 4 Educational Foundations of Gender-Class Equality. 4.1 Education and the institutional equality frame. 4.2 Group differences in educational foundations. 4.3 Post-war expansion of pre-primary provision. 4.4 More secondary education for all. 4.5 Expanding educational attainment. 4.6 Educational structures and relative group equality. Chapter 5 Policy Foundations of Gender-Class Employment Equality. 5.1 Introduction. 5.2 Australian versus US 19th Century worker mobilization. 5.3 European post-war employment policies. 5.4 Australian versus US post-war equality initiatives. 5.5 The European Union and gender equality. 5.6 Work-family reconciliation and gender equality. 5.7 Gender-class employment equality in the 21st Century. Chapter 6 Current Gender-Class Employment Equality. 6.1 Introduction. 6.2 The institutional equality frame and employment status. 6.3 Individual characteristics and employment in context. 6.4 Weekly work hours of employed individuals in context. 6.5 Gender-class wage inequalities in context. 6.6 Employment equality in its institutional equality frame. 6.A Technical appendix. Chapter 7 Gender-Class Equality in Paid and Unpaid Work. 7.1 Introduction. 7.2 Housework over time and across countries. 7.3 Who does any housework in context? 7.4 Predicting individual housework hours in context. 7.5 Couple time in paid and unpaid work in context. 7.6 Equality exchanges in their institutional frames. 7.A. Technical appendix. Chapter 8 Sustainable Policy for Greater Equality. 8.1 The resilience of complex inequality. 8.2 The inefficiency of market inequalities. 8.3 Social investment strategies. 8.4 Policy and sustainable unpaid time.

About the Author

Lynn Prince Cooke is a professor of sociology at the University of Surrey, UK. Her research, exploring policy effects on group outcomes, has appeared in American Journal of Sociology, European Sociological Review, and Journal of Marriage and Family, for which she co-authored the 2010 decade review essay on cross-national research.

About the Series

Perspectives on Gender

Perspectives on Gender represents the very best feminist scholarship on gender in the social sciences. The books in the series advance the understanding of how inclusive of difference our perspectives need to be to capture what gender means and emphasize the important role of social change in and for gender relations.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Gender & the Law
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Feminism & Feminist Theory
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Men's Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Women's Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Gender Studies