Original essays by eighteen senior women sociologists on their diverse personal histories and professional experiences

Individual Voices, Collective Visions

Fifty Years of Women in Sociology

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edited by Ann Goetting and Sarah Fenstermaker

In essays written specially for this volume, eighteen senior women sociologists engage in analytic reflections on interconnections between their personal lives and their research, teaching, and activism. With humor, irony, and passion, these women—whose institutions range from elite universities to junior colleges—convey their diverse personal histories, career paths, and professional obstacles. As a result, the volume provides a picture of the complex dynamic among individual biography and sociological practice, personal growth, and institutional change.



Introduction: Fictions of the Self – Ann Goetting

Part I: Echoes of the Baby Boom: Mothering and Careers
1. Writing Papers and Stirring Soup: Career and Family in the Baby Boom Years – Darha Clapper Brack
2. An Accidental Sociologist – Beth B. Hess
3. Obstacles and Opportunities en Route to a Career in Sociology – Hannah Schiller Wartenberg

Part II: Up the Down Escalator: Tales of Academic Mobility
4. Acquiring an Academic Room of One's Own – Jane E. Prather
5. Reflections on a Serendipitous and Rocky Career – Janet Lever
6. Paradigm Lost: The Journey from Normal Science to Permanent Marginality – Judy Long

Part III: Varieties of International Sociology
7. Marginality, Migration, and Metamorphoses – Britta Fischer
8. Bridging Worlds: A Sociologist's Memoir – Suzanne Keller
9. Sociologist by Default: Reflections on Past Choices and Future Goals – Martha E. Gimenez
10. The Life Course of a Sociologist – Helena Znaniecka Lopata

Part IV: Isolation, Marginality...
11. Discovering Gender: My Paths to a Feminist Sociology – Elaine J. Hall
12. Isolation and the Woman Scholar – Diane Margolis
13. Slouching Toward Sociology – Helen Mayer Hacker
14. Working the Third Shift – Lynda Lytle Holmstrom

Part V: ...And Community
15. Seventeen White Men and Me – Coramae Richey Mann
16. Marginality, Motherhood, and Method: Paths to a Social Science Career and Community – Shulamit Reinharz
17. Kaddish and Renewal – Gaye Tuchman
18. Becoming an Active Feminist Academic: Gender, Class, Race, and Intelligence – Pamela Ann Roby
Conclusion: "Editing" Women, Memoir, and the Sociological "I" – Sarah Fenstermaker

About the Editors and Contributors


About the Author(s)

Ann Goetting is Professor of Sociology at Western Kentucky University.

Sarah Fenstermaker is Professor of Sociology and Women's Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Contributors: Britta Fischer, Martha E. Gimenez, Helen Mayer Hacker, Elaine J. Hall, Beth B. Hess, Lynda Lytle Holmstrom, Suzanne Keller, Janet Lever, Judy Long, Helena Znaniecka Lopata, Coramae Richey Mann, Diane Margolis, Jane E. Prather, Shulamit Reinharz, Pamela Ann Roby, Gaye Tuchman, Hannah Schiller Wartenberg, Audrey Wipper, and the editors.

Subject Categories

Women's Studies

In the series

Women in the Political Economy, edited by Ronnie J. Steinberg.

No longer active.

Women in the Political Economy, edited by Ronnie J. Steinberg, includes books on women and issues of work, family, social movements, politics, feminism, and empowerment. It emphasizes women's roles in society and the social construction of gender and also explores current policy issues like comparable worth, international development, job training, and parental leave.



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