“Paxton and Hughes provide the most comprehensive coverage yet attempted of women's increasing role in electoral politics across the globe. Women, Politics, and Power should be a valuable contribution to courses in political sociology and globalization as well as gendered courses in politics.”


Women, Politics, and Power provides a clear and detailed introduction to women's political participation and representation across a wide range of countries and regions. Using broad statistical overviews and detailed case-study accounts, authors Pamela Paxton and Melanie Hughes document both historical trends and the contemporary state of women's political strength across diverse countries. In addition to describing worldwide themes, the book acknowledges differences among women through attention to intersectionality and heterogeneity among women. Dedicated chapters on six geographic regions highlight the distinct paths women may take to political power in different parts of the world. There is simply no other book that offers such a thorough and multidisciplinary synthesis of research on women's political power around the world.

Sub-Saharan Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa

My administration shall empower Liberian women in all areas of our national life. We will support and increase the write of laws that restore their dignity and deal drastically with the crimes that dehumanize them.

—Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa's first elected woman president, in her inauguration speech, January 16, 2006, Liberia

In 2008, Rwanda, a country roughly the size of Maryland located in the center of sub-Saharan Africa, made world history by becoming the first country to elect a national legislature with more women than men. Although Rwanda is no longer the only country to have elected a female-majority legislature, Rwanda still leads the world in women's representation at 56%.

Just a few decades ago, Rwandan women's political success would have been unthinkable. Researchers’ depiction ...

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