As women increasingly play a role and gain ever greater prominence in congressional politics, they need to navigate the at times conflicting demands of loyalty to party culture, responsiveness to party leadership, political goals, and the need to get reelected. Based on extensive interviews and historical research, this book examines differences between Republican and Democratic political cultures, how these differences affect women members of Congress as they pursue agendas and seek to bolster their electability, and the effectiveness of women within an institution traditionally dominated by men.
"During the past thirty years political scientists have sought to explain the behavior of members of Congress by assuming that members are rational actors guided by a set of shared motivations - to gain election and reelection, to advance policy goals, and to further career ambitions. Such explanations have tended to downplay the importance of variables such as gender or political party. Jocelyn Jones Evans now offers the most thorough study to date of the role of gender and party in shaping the behavior of members of Congress. Drawing upon both quantitative and qualitative evidence, she argues that both gender and party affect member behavior. Furthermore, she offers an explanation of how these variables relate to explain the differing experiences of female Republicans and female Democrats. Her findings will command the attention of congressional scholars and chart a direction for future research." - Ronald M. Peters, Jr., University of Oklahoma
"Considering the extreme partisanship now characteristic of the House of Representatives and the increasing number of women in the chamber, it's about time that someone examined how party shapes women's House careers. Jocelyn Jones Evans does that. Her party culture framework is likely to prove controversial but should only increase interest in her study."
- Barbara Sinclair, UCLA