The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present
Little Brown and Company
On Sale: October 14, 2009
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Picking up where her previous successful, and highly lauded
book, America's Women, left off, Gail Collins recounts the
sea change women have experienced since 1960. A
comprehensive mix of oral history and Collins's keen
research, this is the definitive book about five crucial
decades of progress, told with the down-to-earth, amusing,
and agenda-free tone this beloved New York Times columnist
is known for. The interviews with women who have lived
through these transformative years include an advertising
executive in the 60s who was not allowed to attend board
meetings that took place in the all-male dining room; and
an airline stewardess who remembered being required to bend
over to light her passengers' cigars on the men-
only 'Executive Flight' from New York to Chicago.
We, too, may have forgotten the enormous strides made by
women since 1960--and the rare setbacks. "Hell yes, we have
a quota [7%]" said a medical school dean in 1961. "We do
keep women out, when we can." At a pre-graduation party at
BarnardCollege, "they handed corsages to the girls who were
engaged and lemons to those who weren't." In 1960, two-
thirds of women 18-60 surveyed by Gallup didn't approve of
the idea of a female president. Until 1972, no woman ran in
the Boston Marathon, the year when Title IX passed,
requiring parity for boys and girls in school athletic
programs (and also the year after Nixon vetoed the
childcare legislation passed by congress). What happened
during the past fifty years--a period that led to the first
woman's winning a Presidential Primary--and why? The
cataclysmic change in the lives of American women is a
story Gail Collins seems to have been born to tell.
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