DescriptionUsing a direct, personal voice that students will find engaging, Elizabeth Rider offers a well-researched, logical, and empirical book that presents current issues in the psychology of women in a balanced and fair manner. The author does not represent a particular agenda, but instead presents the best of what we know, even with its limitations. Throughout the book, applications relate the material to women's lives in a compelling, personal way. Featured studies illuminate the process of research, describe the "why" and "how" of key experiments, and introduce students to the primary literature in the field. As students see how researchers have gone about exploring questions about the psychology of women, they are encouraged to think critically and to see the research in context.
About the Author.
Chapter 1. Foundations for a Psychology of Women.
All the Women in the World.
How They Differ.
What They Share.
Real Life: Life in Rural Africa.
Early Women’s Movements.
Women’s Movements Today.
Women in Psychology.
Psychology Views Women.
Women’s Contributions to Psychology.
Current Status of Women in Psychology.
Women’s Psychology: A Unique Field.
Psychology of Women and the Study of Gender.
Will the Field Remain Relevant?
Points to Keep in Mind.
Meaning Is Relative.
Gender and Context Are Inseparable.
Biases Are Everywhere.
Individuals Vary More Than Groups.
There is Much Variability Within Groups.
There’s an Exception to Every Rule.
Socialization and Culture Are Crucial to Gender.
Chapter 2. Studying Women and Gender.
Traditional Research Methods.
Evaluating Traditional Methods.
Nonsexist Research Methods.
Concerns with Traditional Research.
Featured Study: Feminist Study of Menopause.
Integrating the Approaches.
Research on Gender Differences.
Are Males and Females Really So Different?
How Are Differences Detected?
Commentary: The Practical Significance of Gender Differences.
Where Do We Stand on Comparative Gender Research?
What Do Gender Differences Mean?
Chapter 3. Explaining Gender.
Freud and Biological Identity
Commentary: Phyllis Freud Turns the Tables.
Post- and Neo-Freudians.
Social-Learning and Social-cognitive Theory.
Reinforcement and Imitation.
Featured Study: Gender Awareness in Children.
Gender Schema Theory.
Structured Social Roles.
Gender as Social Construction.
Gender and Social Construction.
Critique: How Well Do the Theories Do?
Chapter 4. How Biology Affects Gender.
Consequences of Prenatal Hormonal Conditions.
Hormones and Development.
Hormones and Behavior.
Commentary: How Many Sexes are There?
Sex and Brain Size.
Biological Theories of Gender.
Featured Study: Mistakes of Gender and Gender Identity.
Chapter 5. Socialization: Assigning Roles to Women.
Do You Want a Boy or a Girl?
Parents and Babies.
Who Does What?
Girl’s World, Boy’s World.
Racial and Cultural Variations.
How Strong Is Parental Influence?
Gender Roles Across the Life Span.
Teachers and Schools.
Commentary: An African American Perspective of TV.
Featured Study: Gender Stereotypes in Disney Films.
Magazines and Books.
Media Representations of the Female Body.
Commentary: What Do We Learn from Barbie?
Play and Sports.
Play Group Structure.
Chapter 6. Communicating.
Do Women and Men use Language Differently?
Who Talks More?
Intonation and Pitch.
Women, Men, and Language.
Featured Study: Culture, Gender, and Conversation.
Commentary: Guess What—Women Are Funny!
The Other Ways We Communicate.
Personal Space, Posture, and Appearance.
How Language Represents Women.
The Normative Male.
The Pejorative Woman.
Language and Thought.
Commentary: What’s in a Name?
Chapter 7. Reasoning About the World.
Are Women Smarter Than Men?
The Cognitive Abilities of Women and Men.
Commentary: Single-Sex Classes?
Explaining Gender Differences in Cognitive Abilities.
Motivation to Achieve.
Explaining the Successes and the Failures.
Featured Study: Are Girls “Helpless” When It Comes to Computers?
Ethnic and Cultural Differences.
Chapter 8. Work.
Where Do Women Work?
What Do You Want to Be?
Eccles’ Model of Occupational Choice.
Featured Study: How Much Do You Think You Should Earn?
Combining Employment with Family.
Real Life: I Want a Career and I Want a Family . . .
When a Woman Retires.
Chapter 9. Personality and Social Interactions.
Aspects of Personality.
Levinson’s Life Structure.
Stone Center’s Relational Theory.
Power and Behavior.
Featured Study: Identity and Leadership in Cross-Cultural Contexts.
Who is Swayed?
Other Components of Personality.
Women Who Are Friends.
Real Life: African American and White Lesbian Friendships.
Men and Women Can Be Friends.
Real Life: Guy Friends.
Chapter 10. Relationships and Lifestyles.
Dating and Commitment.
Selecting a Partner.
Commentary: Dating by “The Rules”.
Marriage and Partnerships.
What's Love Got to do with it?
Is Marriage Satisfying.
Living Together: Significant Others.
Divorce or Separation.
What Causes Divorce?
The Consequences for Women.
Featured Study: Racial Differences in Reaction and Coping with Separation and Divorce.
Why We Have Children.
What We Expect.
The Realities of Motherhood.
Variations on Child Rearing: Single, Minority, Lesbian Motherhood.
Parenthood Changes Marriage.
Real Life: The Motherhood Experience.
Why We Stay Single.
Labels Confine Our Perceptions.
Lesbians in Relationships.
Commentary: Same-Sex Marriages.
Chapter 11. Health and Reproduction.
Toward a Health Care System for Women.
Overall Health and Fitness.
Poor and Minority Women.
Problems Women Face.
Heart Disease Is Not Just for Men.
The Insidious Killer, Lung Cancer.
The Once Silent Epidemic, Breast Cancer.
Real Life: When Cancer Strikes.
Other “Female” Cancers.
The Menstrual Cycle.
Menarche and Puberty.
Commentary: If Men Could Menstruate.
Fertility and Infertility.
How We Feel, How They Feel.
Real Life: Being Pregnant.
The Teenage Pregnancy Epidemic.
The Stages of Labor.
Chapter 12. Sexuality.
Sexuality and Our Beliefs.
An Entrenched Double Standard.
Infancy and Childhood.
Learning about Sex.
Real Life: Sexual Experiences.
Explaining Sexual Behaviors: Script Theory.
The Middle Years and Beyond.
Biology or Culture?
Real Life: Who Should Be Responsible for Contraception?
Use and Nonuse.
Featured Study: “When You Carry Condoms All the Boys Think You Want It” .
Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
Chapter 13. Violence in Women’s Lives.
Just How Prevalent Is Rape?
Myths and Scripts.
Commentary: The “Rape” of Mr. Smith.
Acquaintance and Date Rape.
Marital or Relationship Rape.
Real Life: The Aftermath of Date Rape.
Real Life: Helping Someone Who Has Been Raped Heal.
Men Who Rape.
Childhood Sexual Abuse.
The Effects Last a Lifetime.
The Cycle of Abuse.
Why Do Some Women Stay?
Featured Study: Inner Strength of Abused Women.
Definition and Types.
The Effects of Harassment.
Chapter 14. Mental Health.
What Constitutes “Good” Mental Health?
A New View of Mental Health.
Racial and Cultural Biases.
Depression: Beyond Sadness.
Diagnosis and Characteristics.
Explaining Gender Differences.
Real Life: The Beast.
Agoraphobia and Panic Attacks.
Real Life: Wasted.
Alcohol and Other Drugs.
Racial and Cultural Issues.
Chapter 15. Epilogue.
The Importance of Gender.
• A strong psychological focus of issues in the chapters on physical health and reproduction.
• Increased coverage of how the field of psychology has viewed women of color and poor women.
• New research on how mothers and fathers interact with their children and parenting styles associated with mothers and fathers.
• Takes a scholarly approach to the material and a higher-level treatment of issues than the competitors and a deeper examination of material.
• Presents a coherent summary of current theory and research.
• Provides a detailed historical context with which to view more current developments.
• Examines the cultural obsession with male and female differences versus similarities.
• Covers all the important theories on how children acquire gender identity.
• Provides insight into the impact of biology and socialization on gender identification.