Thursday, April 20, 2006

“About 9 to 5.” National Association of Working Women. 28 Feb.-March.2006
This website is one example of an organization that supports working women and provides statistics concerning working women, links to useful resources, and how to join the organization. The National Association of Working Women focuses primarily on strengthening women’s ability to work for economic justice and equality. Founded in 1973, 9 to 5 has activists in more than two hundred cities and has members in every state.

Crouse, Janice S. “Researchers Document Behavioral and Intellectual Dangers.” Daycare Dilemma. 25 July-Aug. 2002. Concerned Women for America. 28 Jan.-Feb. 2006 .

In this article, Crouse discusses the findings of a new study highlighting the behavioral and intellectual dangers parents could potentially face in using childhood daycare. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development confirm that young children are affected by the number of hours their mothers spend with them and when deprived of sufficient care, score lower on school-readiness tests. After providing substantial evidence from several sources, Crouse ultimately states that the “best environment to foster a child’s intellectual environment is the home” and that the ultimate question when deciding whether to stay-at-home or work should be decided solely on “what is right for the child.” She asserts that mothers who ignore research concerning what is ideal for their children are putting their children at risk. This article is taken from the Concerned Women for America Organization, thus it is intended primarily for women who support the organization or who are looking for research concerning women’s issues.

Faludi, Susan. Backlash. New York: Crown Inc, 1991.

Fauldi’s book gives an overview of the history of feminism and focuses primarily on the “backlashes” that have resulted in feminists struggle for women’s equality. Faludi carefully defines what a backlash is as “an attempt to retract the handful of small and hard-won victories that the feminist movement has managed to win for women.” Special emphasis is also put on the negative effects various aspects of popular culture has had on feminist movements. Faludi very assertively claims that the multitude of “backlashes” that have occurred in history have made a huge impact on feminist movements and concludes that we may have made as many advances in women’s equality as one may think. This book is written in a way that any reader can understand the complexities involved in feminism and women’s quest for equality. One does not have to be an expert on feminism to be able to grasp the overall concepts and get a sense of what feminism is about. The history of feminism is used as Faludi’s primary method of explaining backlashes.

Holcomb, Betty. Not Guilty. New York: Scribner, 1998.

Holcomb explores the idea of whether women can “have it all,” referring to women attempting to balance all of the different facets of life particularly working and having children. She focuses primarily on the many obstacles that working mothers face in having families and the changing family dynamics in the last several decades. Holcomb attests that working mothers are ultimately “not guilty” for having children and working as well. Pro-feminist, Holcomb argues that family dynamics are changing for the better, to allow women to take on roles formerly employed mainly by men. Not Guilty provided me with an overview of the many obstacles working mothers face and an overall sense women should have the inherent right to have children and continue working if inclined to do so.

Levitan, Sar A., and Richard S. Belous. “Working Wives and Mothers: What happens to Family Life?” Monthly Labor Review (1981): 26-30. 28 Feb.-Mar. 2006.

Levitan and Belous discusses the positive and negative effects mother and wives working have on overall family dynamics. Their claim is that after careful analysis of family-related data, although American families are changing, they are not degraded by these changes. The shift of an increasing number of mothers working in addition to continuing family-related “duties,” has not affected the distribution of responsibilities among husbands and wives. Levitan and Belous claim that the main negative burden working mothers face is this unequal distribution of roles between wives and husbands. The many economic factors that result with the shift in family dynamics are discussed. The article recommends that social policies need to be changed to compensate for the changes in families.

“Our Company.” Working Mother Magazine. Working Mother Media. 28 Feb.-Mar.

This website is a multi-media marketing company that provides strategies and solutions specifically to women in various careers. They provide many marketing partnership programs for women to help execute their intended business needs and reach specific target audiences. This is one of the many examples of a company that has been established to promote and support working mothers.

“The Employment Situation: January 2006.” 3 Feb.-Mar.2006. United States Department
of Labor. 7 Mar.-Apr.2006 .

The United States Department of labor releases monthly statistics concerning the various employment and unemployment rates. Statistical information is broken down in numerous categories including by race, gender, hourly earnings, economic status, and age. By looking at the data one is able to compare the number of man and women employed.

“The Report of the APA Presidential Initiative on Work and Families.” American
Psychological Association. APA Public Affairs. 28 Jan.-Feb. 2006 .

This article focuses on the positive outcomes working mothers and fathers have on their families. Recommendations for working families are provided. Claims and recommendations made are drawn from various studies that are cited in the article.

Wadham, Ben. “Global Men’s Health and the Crisis of Western Masculinity.” Ed.
Bob Pease and Kieth Pringle. A Man’s World? (2001): 69-82.

Young, Diane S., and Ednita M. Wright. “Mother Making Tenure.”
Journal of Education37.3 (2001): 1-555. Expanded Academic ASAP. Randolph-Macon, Ashland. 28 Feb.-Mar. 2006.

Young and Wright completed a study in which twenty-two tenure-track mothers in university programs responded to a mail survey on the experience of combining motherhood while trying to obtain tenure. Both authors of the article make it apparent that this is not an easy endeavor for a mother to undertake. The parameters of the study are discussed in detail. Personal strategies for mothers trying to balance both a career and family are given. Some of the specific struggles mothers faced were time management issues, lack of university support, and limited childcare resources.

Bardari, Kristin M. "Beauty, Sexuality, and Identity: the Social Control of Women." Sexuality, Society, and Feminism. Ed. Cheryl B. Travis and Jacquelyn W. White. Washington DC: American Psychological Association, 2000. 237-272.

Bardari claims that narrow definitions of beauty are used as mechanisms to maintain social, political, and economic control by those who would benefit from traditional patriarchal structures. Thus, the physical appearance of a woman is ultimately used as a form of gender-based oppression. Four sections divide the article: how sexuality socially controls women, social formulation of what beauty is, the physical and emotional costs of incorporating beauty formulation, and finally some suggestions for how to change the composition of these claims in society.

Ross, Karen. "Women Framed: the Gendered Turn in Mediated Politics." Women and the Media: International Perspectives. Ed. Karen Ross and Carolyn M. Byerly. Malden: Blackwell Ltd, 2004. 60-80.

Ross focuses on the relationship between women, politics, and the media and focuses on the way the media covers women politicians and the resulting views women have on themselves as a result. The article begins by discussing strategies the news media uses when formulating stories. This is supported by testimonies of women parliamentarians from individual interviews. Ross raises important questions concerning the negative and often sexist way the media portrays politicians as well as women overall. She uses Bridget Jones “big ass” in the movie Bridget Jones Diary to make a point that the media often focuses on irrelevant aspects. Ross concludes by stating that the media’s impact on women is over all much more damaging then beneficial in portraying women as powerful and influential.


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