Gender, Choice and Commitment: Women Solicitors in England and Wales and the Struggle for Equal Status

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This book is the first full-length discussion of women's experiences in the solicitors profession in the UK. It provides an account which is grounded in historical research and a contemporary research study. The authors explore this material to analyse both women's own experiences and the mainstream culture and structure of the profession. The analysis draws on perspectives from feminist jurisprudence to the sociology of the professions to shed light on the processes which support women's continued subordination in employment as lawyers.
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Editorial Reviews

Draws on historical and contemporary studies to analyze both women's own experiences as lawyers and the mainstream culture and structure of the profession. Sommerlad (public law, Leeds Metropolitan U.) and Sanderson (community studies, U. of Huddersfield) review the struggle to overcome the formal barriers to women's entry into the legal profession, and identify the subsequent informal barriers that were raised to impede their participation and career progress. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781840144543
  • Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Limited
  • Publication date: 12/1/1998
  • Series: Socio-Legal Studies
  • Pages: 360
  • Product dimensions: 8.62 (w) x 6.02 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
List of Abbreviations
Cases Cited
1 Introduction 1
2 Gender and the Legal Labour Market 15
3 'The Common Sense of Mankind': the Common Law and the Historical Exclusion of Women from the Legal Profession 49
4 'Bonds of Trust': From Informal Exclusion to Full Participation? 79
5 The Men's Room: Cultural Capital and the Fraternal Contract 119
6 'She's All Right for a Bird': The Accommodation of Women 153
7 The Meaning of the Career Break: Human Capital, Cultural Capital, Social Capital 197
8 Conclusion 255
Appendix A Description and Discussion of Methods 291
Bibliography 307
Index 331
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