Overview

Gender issues continue to be a prominent concern of academics and policy-makers, and increasingly arise in various forms to be debated in the public sphere and popular media. But what exactly do we mean by gender? How can we best understand gender differences? How are current gender relations changing? What new paths are ‘femininity’ and ‘masculinity’ taking? What would it be like to live in a society in which differences of gender were ...
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Gender

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Overview

Gender issues continue to be a prominent concern of academics and policy-makers, and increasingly arise in various forms to be debated in the public sphere and popular media. But what exactly do we mean by gender? How can we best understand gender differences? How are current gender relations changing? What new paths are ‘femininity’ and ‘masculinity’ taking? What would it be like to live in a society in which differences of gender were transcended?

In this new edition of her popular and highly lauded book, Harriet Bradley provides an introduction to the concept of gender and the different theoretical approaches which have developed within gender studies. Utilizing life narratives, she investigates processes of gendering in three important spheres of contemporary social life: production, reproduction and consumption. The book highlights the centrality of gender in everyday life and shows how thinking about gender is influenced by changing political contexts. As well as updating the discussion with the latest scholarship, political concerns and economic data, the new edition pays closer attention to intersectionality and hybrid identities, as well as exploring the complexities of contemporary relations of masculinity and femininity in the light of new feminist activities.

This lively and accessible book will be of interest to students across the social sciences, as well as anyone interested in contemporary relations between women and men.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Winner of Choice's outstanding academic title award

"Bradley provides us with a fresh and very lucid account by drawing upon her own personal experiences, examining gender through the lenses of production, reproduction and consumption."
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

"Bradley's clear and straightforward writing style, the inclusion of personal experiences and research findings allows the reader to reflect on the issues and ideas raised within this text without becoming entangled in complicated explanations of key concepts around gender ... Bradley's book provides both teachers and researchers with an excellent introduction to issues and debates around gender and provides an ideal base from which to begin to explore these issues further in the education field."
Gender and Education

"Bradley's discussions are theoretically rich, yet easy to follow for those less familiar with gender studies, as key concepts are italicized, clearly defined, and thoroughly discussed. The combination of empirical research and personal narratives throughout the book superbly illustrates both how gender is conceptually understood and how it is lived and experienced in the everyday world ... a rich, intelligible sociological introduction to gender."
Canadian Journal of Sociology

"This book is an introductory text and fulfils this purpose admirably. Bradley's writing is clear, cogent and engaging."
Political Studies Review

"A very accessible book summarizing the main theories and issues on gender with both a historical and a contemporary outlook ... I particularly enjoyed reading it."
Work, Employment and Society

"This book is an excellently written mixture of informative text and personal story, presenting gender as lived experience, that should be very appealing and accessible to students. Unlike most gender texts in the US, which mainly use a liberal gender mainstreaming framework, this book examines gender in the context of production, reproduction and consumption. This refreshing approach encourages me to recommend this text to like-minded colleagues in the US."

Marina Adler, University of Maryland

"This is a remarkably insightful book, which demonstrates the continuing salience and complexity of gender to contemporary societies. Harriet Bradley’s style is fresh, lucid and concise, bringing to life key gender processes of our time as well as discussing the variety of theories attempting to account for them. She strikes a happy balance between critical exposition and her own original thinking. Grounded in empirical studies from across the globe and always conscious of the complex interrelations between gender and other social processes, this volume will be invaluable for students and specialists alike."

Miriam A. Glucksmann, University of Essex

"Harriet Bradley’s Gender is a wide-ranging and impressive survey of 30 years of feminist theorizing. Interleaved with gripping reflections on an individual's gendered life, this book will be an invaluable resource for teaching about gender across the social sciences."

Linda McDowell, University of Oxford

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Harriet Bradley is emeritus professor of sociology at the University of Bristol.
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Table of Contents

Preface to Second Edition vii

Introduction: The Concept of Gender 1

IN AND OUT OF THE FRAME: A PERSONAL HISTORY OF GENDER 9

1. What's in a Name? Meanings and Usages of Gender 15

GENDERING AND CLASS: GROWING UP GIRL, GROWING UP BOY 29

2. Gender and Modernity 37

'WHAT'S IT ALL ABOUT?' BEING A MAN IN THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY 54

3. Gender and Postmodernity 64

'SISTERS UNDER THEIR SKINS'? IDENTITIES IN A GLOBAL AGE 87

4. Gendered Worlds: Production 98

HAVING IT ALL: FAMILY AND EMPLOYMENT IN WOMEN'S LIVES 118

5. Gendered Worlds: Reproduction 129

MEN, MARRIAGE AND EMOTIONS: ARRANGEMENTS BETWEEN THE SEXES 150

6. Gendered Worlds: Consumption 159

IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY: GENDERED UTOPIAS 183

Conclusion: What the Future Holds – Gender, Theory and Politics 195

Questions for Discussion 221

Glossary 223

References 227

Index 242

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