How can we understand the gender patterns of modern society? Are gender identities unstable? How do masculinities and femininities develop? Do gender patterns change under globalization? In this book R. W. Connell, one of the world's leading scholars in the field, answers these questions, and more. He provides a readable introduction to modern gender studies, gender theories, and gender politics. He presents contemporary classics of research, traces the history of Western intellectuals' ideas, and discusses current findings on gender differences, inequalities and patterns in the state and corporations.
However, the book is more than an introduction. It provides a powerful contemporary framework for gender studies, based on a synthesis of structural and post-structural analysis. Connell demonstrates the multidimensional and dynamic character of gender relations. He shows how to link individual life with large-scale social patterns, and how to locate gendered bodies in the historical process that constantly transforms gender relations. He also shows, in a deeply personal way, how gender politics arises in personal life and why we need to address injustice.