Mothers on the Fast Track: How a New Generation Can Balance Family and Careers

Mothers on the Fast Track: How a New Generation Can Balance Family and Careers

by Mary Ann Mason, Eve Mason Ekman
     
 

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In the past few decades the number of women entering graduate and professional schools has been going up and up, while the number of women reaching the top rung of the corporate and academic worlds has remained relatively stagnant. Why are so many women falling off the fast track?
In this timely book, Mary Ann Mason traces the career paths of the first

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Overview

In the past few decades the number of women entering graduate and professional schools has been going up and up, while the number of women reaching the top rung of the corporate and academic worlds has remained relatively stagnant. Why are so many women falling off the fast track?
In this timely book, Mary Ann Mason traces the career paths of the first generation of ambitious women who started careers in academia, law, medicine, business, and the media in large numbers in the 1970s and '80s. Many women who had started families but continued working had ended up veering off the path to upper management at a point she calls "the second glass ceiling." Rather than sticking to their original career goals, they allowed themselves to slide into a second tier of management that offers fewer hours, less pay, lower prestige, and limited upward mobility. Men who did likewise—entered the career world with high aspirations and then started families while working—not only did not show the same trend, they reached even higher levels of professional success than men who had no families at all.
Along with her daughter, an aspiring journalist, Mason has written a guide for young women who are facing the tough decision of when—and if—to start a family. It is also a guide for older women seeking a second chance to break through to the next level, as Mason herself did in academia. The book features anecdotes and strategies from the dozens of women they interviewed. Advice ranges from the personal (know when to say "no," the importance of time management) to the institutional, with suggestions for how the workplace itself can be changed to make it easier for ambitious working mothers to reach the top levels. The result is a roadmap of new choices for women facing the sobering question of how to balance a successful career with family.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Lots of excellent advice for women facing different career stages."—BusinessWeek

"Mason and Ekman's book is an interesting look at the real challenges that mothers face in balancing work and family in a variety of professions."—National Review

"Finally a book that makes crystal clear the road ahead for women. Mothers on the Fast Track beautifully lays out the next steps for the smartest female brains to lead the nation."— Louann Brizendine, M.D., author of The Female Brain

"Mothers on the Fast Track is must reading for professional women starting families, second chapters or simply trying to break through to the next level. As the demands of parenting and the workplace have intensified, we're searching more than ever for the right work-family balance. Now Mary Ann Mason and her daughter Eve have produced an indispensable guide and realistic cost-benefit analysis of motherhood and women's careers."—Lynn Povich, Former Editor-in-Chief of Working Woman magazine

"What an excellent book! What makes the book so powerful is the personal stories, gleaned from what must have been hundreds of interviews with women in American society. Mothers on the Fast Track made me think; and, most often, find validation of what I have seen in the lives of my wife, five sisters, and ten nieces."—Tom Campbell, Dean, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley

"Compared to her sisters of the l960s, the fast track mom of today has it made — the new man at home, big opportunities at work, wider supports in place. True? Or, as Mason and Ekman warn us, false. Standards of motherhood have risen, they point out, and moral support declined. But, we can beat —and improve —the new odds, and this useful, timely and wonderfully warm book shows how."—Arlie Hochschild, author of The Second Shift and The Time Bind

"Why can't privileged women on the fast track crack the glass ceiling? This mother-daughter team offers a compelling and provocative explanation, helping us understand why all women face gender inequality once they enter the labor force, and even more - what we can do about it."—Ruth Rosen, author of The World Split Open

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195182675
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
06/18/2007
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 6.20(h) x 0.80(d)

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