Women in Britain Since 1945: Women, Family, Work, and the State in the Post-War Years

TitleWomen in Britain Since 1945: Women, Family, Work, and the State in the Post-War Years
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication1992
AuthorsLewis, Jane E.
Number of Pages149
CityOxford, UK; Cambridge, MA

In this analysis, the author assesses the position of women in post-war British society, asking the fundamental question: how much has changed for women and how much has remained the same? Many women feel that they now have a wide range of choice with regard to work, marriage and when and if to have children. Yet it is also demonstrable that sexual segregation in the labour market persists, that women continue to do most of the unpaid work, and that they have unequal access to resources both within the family and beyond it. Women have made substantial gains but they have been unevenly distributed between different social groups and they remain fragile. Even the successful professional woman in her late 30s, married to another professional with the means to employ a nanny for her child and thus to resume her career stands to lose much more financially than her partner should she divorce. A genuinely substantive equality for women has remained elusive and, as Jane Lewis demonstrates, comprises more complicated issues than can be tackled by the kind of equal opportunities legislation that we have seen so far.

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