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Why do so few women occupy positions of power and prestige? Virginia Valian uses concepts and data from psychology, sociology, economics, and biology to explain the disparity in the professional advancement of men and women. According to Valian, men and women alike have implicit hypotheses about gender differences — gender schemas — that create small sex differences in characteristics, behaviors, perceptions, and evaluations of men and women. Those small imbalances accumulate to advantage men and disadvantage women. The most important consequence of gender schemas for professional life is that men tend to be overrated and women underrated.
Valian's goal is to make the invisible factors that retard women's progress visible, so that fair treatment of men and women will be possible. The book makes its case with experimental and observational data from laboratory and field studies of children and adults,and with statistical documentation on men and women in the professions. The many anecdotal examples throughout provide a lively counterpoint.
|A Note on Method and Scope|
|1||Gender Schemas at Work||1|
|2||Gender Begins - and Continues - at Home||23|
|3||Learning About Gender||47|
|4||Biology and Behavior||67|
|5||Biology and Cognition||81|
|6||Schemas That Explain Behavior||103|
|7||Evaluating Women and Men||125|
|8||Effects on the Self||145|
|9||Interpreting Success and Failure||167|
|10||Women in the Professions||187|
|11||Women in Academia||217|
|12||Professional Performance and Human Values||251|
|13||Affirmative Action and the Law||277|
Posted February 13, 2008
I was required to use this book as a textbook for class last semester, and it wasn't very helpful. It seemed like Valian repeated herself often (sure, that is needed to get the point across but too much is too much). Also, while some of the information relating to math scores and such were interesting, there wasn't much application I could use it with. Overall, I wasn't too impressed with the manner in which Valian presented her material.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.