Do the new Asian economies encourage gender equality? Ann Brooks provides a unique insight into this question by assessing the impact of the new economy and the changing labour market on women in Asia. Theoretical debates around globalization, gender and social change are combined with empirical research on professional women in two cosmopolitan cities: Hong Kong and Singapore. The author's research shows that even in such cosmopolitan cities where women tend to have a strong advantage there is a 'new dynamic of inequality'. This makes the examination of women's labour market participation and ambition in these environments very different to previous research. The research is set against the backdrop of Southeast Asia more generally and international comparisons are also drawn. It will be of interest to scholars in sociology, economics, gender studies, business studies and Asian studies.
Dr Ann Brooks is a British academic who left London in 1993 to take up an academic position at Massey University in New Zealand. She was a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Massey University from 1993-2002. In 2002 she relocated to Singapore and is currently Head of Psychology and Sociology Programmes in the School of Arts and Social Sciences, at SIM University in Singapore. Dr Brooks has published extensively in the area of academic women and equity, contemporary feminisms, cultural theory and politics, post colonialism and feminism, citizenship and social justice and more recently globalization, gender and changing work identities. She has written several books on the topics of Academic Women, Post Feminism, and Cultural Theory. Her most recent research is located at the intersecting nexus of contemporary theorizing within gender and feminism particularly in exploring the relationship between intimacy and reflexivity in the construction of the gendered self. Her particular interest is in the construction of the self within late modernity in relation to professional and personal domains.
’This book is a major contribution to a field that remains unexplored and unmapped: the working lives of professional women in Hong Kong and Singapore. In Ann Brooks’s hands this subject functions also as a lens into the gender dimensions of larger social and organizational change in today’s global economy and its specific on the ground operations.’ Saskia Sassen, University of Chicago, USA ’Gendered Work in Asian Cities combines theoretical analysis of globalization and inequality with detailed empirical work in specific locations. It enriches existing literature on globalization, global cities and social changes through its gender perspective and empirical focus on South East Asia. This well written and carefully researched book pays particular attention to the lives of professional women in Hong Kong and Singapore, set within broader debates about globalisation, the new economy and inequality, as well as discussions of flexible citizenship, transnational labour and work cultures and the management of daily life illuminated through the author's own research.’ Diane Perrons, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK ’Brooks does an excellent job weaving together a cross-disciplinary literature review with excerpts from a detailed set of interviews to illustrate how growth of the global knowledge economy, legal changes, new patterns of work and the persistence of traditional social norms have created both opportunities and obstacles for professional women...readers across disciplines will find that the book’s interview excepts offer an illuminating and unique account of the issues facing Asia’s professional women during a period of rapid structural change.’ Asian-Pacific Economic Literature ’...a fascinating read...this book contains fascinating data and interesting insights into the lives of professional women in Hong Kong and Singapore.’ Gender and Education 'Brooks' approach of writing about women's roles and their work-pla