Women and Children Last

Ruth Sidel, Author Viking Books $16.95 (236p) ISBN 978-0-670-80973-8
Comparing the affluent U.S. of today to the Titanic (which, as a luxury liner, nevertheless lacked lifeboats for steerage women and children), Sidel contends in this realistic appraisal that despite the women's movement, social and economic trends of the last 20 yearsespecially the divorce rate and mechanization of industryhave reduced to bare survival hundreds of thousands of already impoverished women and children. Many are older women, battered wives or female heads of families, asserts Sidel (who interviewed several of them), and they are often victims of sex and racial discrimination in the workplace or of government cutbacks in human services. Following Sweden's example, the U.S., she argues, should develop policies to strengthen family life through universal entitlements; should pay women better wages, provide family planning, maternity leaves and prenatal care, along with day and after-school care. Sidel, a sociology professor at Hunter College, wrote Women and Child Care in China. (April)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1986
Release date: 04/01/1986
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