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Competing Devotions: Career and Family Among Women Executives
The wrenching decision facing successful women choosing between demanding careers and intensive family lives has been the subject of many articles and books, most of which propose strategies for resolving the dilemma. Competing Devotions focuses on broader social and cultural forces that create women's identities and shape their understanding of what makes life worth livin ...more
Paperback, 269 pages
Published February 1st 2006 by Harvard University Press
(first published May 30th 2003)
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third time for this one too, and I'm still struck by how good this contribution is. Blair-Loy analyzes elite women's work-family trajectories through the lens of cultural schemas, which, importantly, shape how they interpret the various turning points, leading some to relinquish their careers, others to remain committed, and still others to attempt to fashion something new. lucid and theoretically compelling. A great follow-up to The Second Shift, which we read last week. Can I pat myself on the ...more
Blair-Loy's main argument is that cultural schemas of devotion - devotion to work and devotion to family - have enormous power to shape and/or constrain our behavior and more importantly, our identities. These schemas are largely based on a gendered division of labor and heterosexual marriage - the idea that a man will go out and provide, while a woman stays home and cares for the children and the home. For highly educated, professional women, these schemas are at odds. In this book, Blair-Loy e ...more
Another book required for my Sociology of Gender class. I became very well acquainted while writing a response paper in juxtaposition with an anti-feminist article. Blair-Loy interviews upper-class and executive women--because if they can't be "Supermom" and find the right balance of work and family, then hope is futile for the rest of us.