Breaking Point: Why Women Fall Apart & How They Can Re-Create Their Lives

Martha Nibley Beck, Author Crown Publishers $24 (403p) ISBN 978-0-8129-6375-5
This provocative sociological inquiry by Beck, visiting professor at the American Graduate School for International Management in Phoenix, argues that American women are being torn apart by the paradoxical values by which society judges them. In a historical overview, she describes how the Enlightenment and the industrial revolution led to husbands relying on their wives' unpaid domestic labor. The 19th- and 20th-century feminist movements propounded the idea of female equality, and there has been an influx of women into the workplace. The clash between modern and traditional values, according to Beck, has produced guilt-ridden and overworked women who try to have successful careers while being devoted wives and mothers. Relying on anecdotal interviews, the author theorizes that this conflict leads to a ""breaking point"" for some women that allows them to re-create a ""true self"" no longer based on pleasing others. Beck contends that if enough women can transform themselves, a society will emerge wherein both sexes will be free from gender constraints. Major ad/promo; author tour. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 12/30/1996
Release date: 01/01/1997
Hardcover - 978-0-517-28491-9
Hardcover - 978-0-614-28158-3
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