Trim: 6 x 9
978-1-4985-2650-0 • Hardback • March 2016 • $97.00 • (£75.00)
978-1-4985-2652-4 • Paperback • September 2017 • $50.99 • (£39.00)
978-1-4985-2651-7 • eBook • March 2016 • $45.50 • (£35.00)
Leslie Caughell is assistant professor of political science and gender and women's studies at Virginia Wesleyan College.
Chapter 1: The Gender Divide in American Politics
Chapter 2: Theorizing Gender Gaps
Chapter 3: Gender Gaps in American Public Opinion, 1948 through 2008
Chapter 4: Women at War
Chapter 5: Women and Domestic Policy Preferences
Chapter 6: Gender Gaps Moving Forward
Appendix A: Gender Gaps over Time
Appendix B: Methodology
Appendix B-1: Predictive Validity of Gender Role Socialization
Appendix B-2: Data, Variables, and Coding
Appendix B-3: Simulation Method
Appendix C: Foreign Policy Figures
Appendix D: Social Policy Figures
Caughell provides a comprehensive analysis of the roots of public opinion gender gaps in the US. She demonstrates that for over 60 years, men and women have consistently differed on a broad range of policy issues, but scholars don’t fully understand why those differences persist. Caughell compares four theories for these gender gaps—biological differences, gender role socialization, feminist consciousness, and political knowledge. Caughell demonstrates that all four contribute to preference differences between men and women, depending on the particular policy. Her methods include data simulations and public opinion analysis, using the 2008 National Election Studies as well as the 2000 and 2004 National Annenberg Election Surveys. Caughell finds that political knowledge—measured by survey questions and biological factors—is the driving force in shaping foreign policy gender gaps. On the other hand, feminist consciousness and gender role socialization (both measured by survey responses), along with political knowledge, explain gender gaps in social policy preferences. Caughell’s analysis provides a more complex understanding of gender gap politics, opening up opportunities for a wide range of future research. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.
— Choice Reviews
InThe Political Battle of the Sexes, Leslie Caughell strikes a bold move by refusing accounts of political behavior that rely exclusively on either biologistic or sociologistic forms of explanation. Drawing on research that shows that biology and environment reciprocally shape one another rather than being distinct or opposed, Caughell develops and tests a theoretical framework that social scientists can use to explore how social and biological factors together, in concert and over time, give form to the gender gap in different issue domains.The Political Battle of the Sexesis a provocation to social scientists to think in more subtle and complex ways about the categories and concepts that underlie their empirical work.
— Samantha Frost, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign