Gender Policies in the European Union

Gender Policies in the European Union

Gender Policies in the European Union

Gender Policies in the European Union

Synopsis

An interdisciplinary group of European feminist scholars critically explores the European gender policies from the founding of the European Community to the 1997 Treaty of Amsterdam. They offer different interpretations of the contradiction between the exceptional development of gender equality policy within Community social policy and actual gender inequality. Analysis of the EU policies on the equality of women reveals their central role in the making of the common market and the Community's modernizing action to reform employment patterns and welfare systems. From different, and at times contrasting, feminist perspectives, the contributors propose new policies to challenge the current situation and overcome the EU juridical defect in women's rights, which exacerbates the European « citizenship deficit and « democratic deficit.

Excerpt

Louise A. Tilly

The essays in this volume provide much important empirical information and theoretical exploration about the recent past and current situation of the European Union and women; they also provoke reflection about comparisons of three sorts. the first comparison is a historical one: in what time period and through what process has the eu become what it is today? the second is a comparison of European states in their position on gender and women's issues. the third is a comparison of the European Union policies with those of the United States—a federated political system in which there are very strong political differences that are at least partially regional, and concerns about business competitiveness and pressure from free market ideologues have rolled back even the simulacrum of a welfare state that once existed.

An American reader is struck by the considerable legal progress the authors discuss toward eliminating barriers in the economic arena for women workers, such as achieving equal pay for equal work and equality in social security matters. the history of the European Union has been one of almost steady achievement of legislation promoting greater gender equality in economic matters. This record is at least partly the result of the history of the eu itself; it began as a step toward a common market and community capable of competing on world markets with the United States and later with Japan—the two major world economic players in the second half of the twentieth century. Much of the progress occurred in periods of growth and prosperity, in which sharing the pie was easier. Although a considerable measure of prosperity continues at this writing, economic globalization and the recent problems in Asia have decisively demonstrated to all observers that the shape and condition of the playing field have changed and will likely continue to do so. Free market ideology . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.