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"Women are the most under-represented social group in the elected assemblies of the worl. Women everywhere constitute m ore than one-half of the population and … rarely, are more than a handful of the political elite."

The studies in this volume examine women’s involvement in political parties both past and present. Empirical studies identify the roles Canadian women play in parties, the opportunities and barriers they face, and their progress toward greater representation in the political process.

The questions addressed in this volume include: What are the major barriers to women’s entry into federal politics? (Janine Brodie). Do large numbers of women remain confined to "pink collar" work at the expensive of executive positions? (Sylvia Bashevkin). What is the impact of the candidate selection process on the election of women to the House of Commons? (Lynda Erickson). How does incumbency affect the numbe rof women elected to federal office? (Lisa Young). What is the influence of media coverage on women in politics? (Gertrude Robinson and Armande Saint-Jean).

The authors agree that the under-representation of women in politics undermines the democratic credibility of our governing institutions. Nonetheless, they are cautiously optimistic regarding the prospects for the third generation of women entering politics.

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