By Nancy W. Veeder
Essential characteristics of Women's decision-making have long been ignored or, if considered at all, have been viewed in relationship to male-based factors. Veeder, drawing on experiences of Irish women, establishes that women making important choices do so differently than men. The women, ranging in age from as young as thirteen to over sixty-five, were divided into three age groupings, thereby offering insights into variables over much of the life-span. Themes, born from common experiences emerge from the poignant, compelling accounts of individual women. The author's analysis and commentary structure the book's development and maintain its focus on the context wherein women make their private, but immensely important, decisions--the family. Education, vocation, marriage, and childbearing are considered relative to the thought and emotional factors that influenced the women's decisions. Veeder concludes that women show strength and insight in their approach to choices. She sees women, in comparison with men, as taking more factors into consideration, being more aware of consequences, being more practical, flexible, and valuing of relationships. Women's participation in the workforce and their increased societal roles make this a most timely book. It is, too, an important contribution to, and stimulus for, additional research on gender and decision-making.
- Westport, CT