Fifty years after the Equal Pay Act, why are women still
living in a man's world?
Debora L. Spar never thought of herself as a feminist. Raised
after the tumult of the 1960s, she presumed the gender war was
over. As one of the youngest female professors to be tenured at
Harvard Business School and a mother of three, she swore to young
women that they could have it all. "We thought we could just glide
into the new era of equality, with babies, board seats, and
husbands in tow," she writes. "We were wrong."
Now she is the president of Barnard College, arguably the most
important all-women's college in the United States. And in
Wonder Women: Sex, Power, and the Quest for Perfection-a
fresh, wise, original book- she asks why, a half century after the
publication of Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique, do
women still feel stuck.
In this groundbreaking and compulsively readable book, Spar
explores how American women's lives have-and have not-changed over
the past fifty years. Armed with reams of new research, she details
how women struggled for power and instead got stuck in an endless
quest for perfection. The challenges confronting women are more
complex than ever, and they are challenges that come inherently and
inevitably from being female. Spar is acutely aware that it's time
to change course.
Both deeply personal and statistically rich, Wonder
Women is Spar's story and the story of our culture. It is
cultural history at its best, and a road map for the future.