• Summary
  • Contents
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Research tells us of the problems women face when they cross over into male-dominated professions: discrimination, harassment, glass ceilings, exclusion from informal networks. We also know much about female-dominated professions, where pay and prestige are lower than corresponding male professions. What happens to men doing “women's” jobs? Doing “Women's Work” represents the first effort to summarize our state of knowledge about the effects of men in “women's professions,” on the men and their views of masculinity, on the occupations, and on the women with whom they work. Do men get preferential treatment in these positions? Higher salaries? Are they treated the same as their female coworkers? Through a series of statistical and demographic analyses as well as qualitative case studies of men in such professions as teaching, secretarial work, caregiving, and stripping, the authors offer an insightful glimpse of the roles of these men in bolstering or undermining the gendered assumptions of occupational sex segregation in the workplace. A fascinating yet scholarly study, Doing “Women's Work” will be invaluable reading for students, researchers, and professionals interested in gender studies, work and occupations, human resources, sociology, management, human services, family studies, psychology, and education. “The studies lead to a more complex and sophisticated view of occupational segregation…. The chapters in Christine Williams' book are logically arranged, and all are of reasonably good quality.” – Contemporary Sociology “The focus on pursuing questions is illustrated most capably by this collection of research on occupational segregation…. The book is an excellent collection of essays for those interested in work and gender issues, providing both a rich theoretical background and case studies of men in nontraditional occupations.” – Masculinities

Male Secretaries
Male secretaries
ROSEMARYPRINGLE

Two years ago I was appointed to a promotions committee at a provincial university. Complicated travel arrangements had to be made each time for the 12 or so out-of-town members, and there were difficulties finding dates that were mutually compatible. Extensive documentation had to be collected and circulated, interviews arranged, referees contacted. At each meeting Pat, the secretary, not only took minutes but frequently left the room to make telephone calls and send faxes. Pat's role was clearly to do the bidding of the chair. Pat did all this cheerfully and was warmly thanked by members of the committee at the end for taking care of them. The work was secretarial in the broadest sense, including organizing lunches and daily travel arrangements, ...

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