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Sex and Power

By Susan Estrich


This book examines the question of why, despite the gains women have made as a result of the feminist movement, they still have little power.

266 pages
Riverhead Books (2000)


Reviewed by: Eric Howard


Susan Estrich is to be commended for bravery because, in Sex and Power, she:

Uses plain language rather than retreat behind academic verbiage.

Asks difficult questions for which simple answers are hard to find.

Is honest.

Although women live longer than men and thus ultimately control most of the nation's wealth, and although women study for and enter the professions in relative equality, the percentages of women business and political leaders remain small. Estrich concludes that the enormous amount of work performed in the struggle for women's equality has not accomplished everything, and she indicates that if women want real equality and power, they still have a lot of work cut out for them.

In Estrich's opinion, the basic structures of work and accomplishment still need to be changed. As they stand now, women still must choose between being mothers and being successful; raising children is still not viewed as work.

More engrossing, however, are the numerous facts, anecdotes, and real-world problems that Estrich examines with great honesty. Such honesty about one's own self and one's own political and social situation does not come easily.


Eric Howard is associate editor of Los Angeles Lawyer.

     





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