More Women Can Run: Gender and Pathways to the State Legislatures by Susan J. CarrollMore Women Can Run: Gender and Pathways to the State Legislatures by Susan J. Carroll

More Women Can Run: Gender and Pathways to the State Legislatures

bySusan J. Carroll, Kira Sanbonmatsu

Paperback | October 1, 2013

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Women remain dramatically underrepresented in elective office, including in entry-level political offices. While they enjoy the freedom to stand for office and therefore have an equal legal footing with men, this persistent gender imbalance raises pressing questions about democraticlegitimacy, the inclusivity of American politics, and the quality of political representation. The reasons for women's underrepresentation remain the subject of much debate. One explanation - that the United States lacks sufficient openings for political newcomers - has become less compelling inrecent years, as states that have adopted term limits have not seen the expected gains in women's office holding. Other accounts about candidate scarcity, gender inequalities in society, and the lingering effects of gendered socialization have some merit; however, these accounts still fail toexplain the relatively low numbers. Drawing upon original surveys conducted in 1981 and 2008 by the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) of women state legislators across all fifty states, and follow-up interviews after the 2008 survey, the authors find that gender differences in pathways to the legislatures, first evident in1981, have been surprisingly persistent over time. They find that, while the ambition framework better explains men's decisions to run for office, a relationally embedded model of candidate emergence better captures women's decision-making, with women's decisions more often influenced by theencouragement and support of parties, organizations, and family members.By rethinking the nature of women's representation, this study calls for a reorientation of academic research on women's election to office and provides insight into new strategies for political practitioners concerned about women's political equality.
Susan J. Carroll is Professor of Political Science and Women's and Gender Studies and Senior Scholar at the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University. In 2014 Carroll was awarded the Lifetime Contribution to Political Studies Award by the Political Studies Association. Kira Sanbonmatsu is Professor of Political Scien...
Title:More Women Can Run: Gender and Pathways to the State LegislaturesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:176 pages, 9.02 × 6.1 × 0.51 inPublished:October 1, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199322430

ISBN - 13:9780199322435


Editorial Reviews

"More Women Can Run is a 'must read' for activists, practitioners and academics. Carroll and Sanbonmatsu document what we at EMILY's List have long known: when women support women, women can run and win. We all have a role to play through urging more women to run, backing their candidacies,and contributing financially to their campaigns. This work helps us understand how to build a true representative democracy that includes women." --Ellen Malcolm, Founder and Chair of the Board, EMILY's List