How can mainstream models and classifications be used in analyzing welfare states and gender? What sort of modifications to traditional theory are required? Must alternative frameworks be constructed to accommodate the dimension of gender? These and other questions are addressed in this comprehensive volume - the first to synthesize the insights of feminist and mainstream research in examining the impact of gender on welfare state analysis and outcomes. The text also highlights the effect of welfare state policies on women and men. This book assembles an international and interdisciplinary cast of scholars who approach the subject on two levels. First, they test the applicability of mainstream frameworks to new areas in analyzing gender. Secondly, they highlight possible reconceptualizations and innovative frameworks designed to provide gender-balanced analyses. These twin approaches are combined with a comparative component, focusing on a cross-section of countries of major interest in welfare state research.
This text should contribute to contemporary theorizing on welfare states by integrating a range of contemporary research in comparative politics, women's studies, social policy and economics. It should be of interest to students and academics across a wide range of disciplines.
`The stated aim of Gendering Welfare States is to integrate mainstream and feminist approaches to the comparative analysis of the welfare state in Western Europe.... The book contains a series of essays some of which deal with the subject overall and with particular aspects of welfare state provision. The collection is usefully drawn together in an introductory essay by Diane Sainsbury, which points out that such an integration on the one hand forces mainstream analysts to pay more attention to unpaid work and the family and, on the other, gives feminist analysis a broader remit and a sharper focus on the state.... produce[s] useful insights.... One point to emerge from these studies and from the book as a whole is the importance of the concept of "gendered time" as a way of illuminating the different trajectories of men and women within the framework of state, market and family....this is a useful book which both argues for and demonstrates the importance of setting gender in its rightful place as one (but only one) of the tools needed to analyse modern welfare states and the changes taking place within them' - Democratization
`The papers are thoughtful in regard to the theoretical and conceptual issues, and contain much interesting comparative material.... This book has a rare coherence for a collection of articles because the authors deal with the same questions, but from different perspectives and with different empirical cases, thus pushing the discussion in new directions' - Economic and Industrial Democracy
`Recent years have seen analyses of the welfare state as a generic type superseded by analyses of welfare states in the plural, as Sainsbury notes in her introduction to this useful volume of interdisciplinary papers on the gender dimension of welfare state diversity.... this is a coherent collection which works well in looking at its subject matter from a variety of angles without being repetitive, and which engages seriously and constructively with the problems of comparative methodology in the pursuit of the gender-friendly welfare state' - Work, Employment and Society
'As the title suggests, the objective of this fine collection of high quality essays is to incorporate gender into comparative welfare state analysis... By bringing gender systematically in, the essays enrich current knowledge of variations among welfare states and offer new or enlarged concepts which challenge widely held tenets. Above all, the book forces us to carefully consider contexts and to avoid quick conclusions.... The volume informs comprehensively about "the state of the art" of comparative welfare research that is sensitive of gender. It also provides some objections with regard to scarcely debated concepts of equality, choices, and trade-offs embedded in welfare regimes. It also raises more general questions about the welfare state, its scope and direction' - Journal of European Social Policy