Chapter

<b>Representing Women: The Elite to Elite Connection</b>

Debra L. Dodson

in The Impact of Women in Congress

Published in print May 2006 | ISBN: 9780198296744
Published online May 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603709 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198296746.003.0005

Series: Gender & Politics

 Representing Women: The Elite to Elite Connection

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This chapter deconstructs women’s words of connection to women, focusing on the connection women members of Congress feel towards other political women. Content analysis of transcripts shows that women members of Congress seem to conceptualize political women as a group with shared experiences and comradery, common concerns, and/or interrelated fates. However, the data also show that beneath the veneer of unity and connectedness revealed in women’s words is considerable complexity, driven not only by individual level forces — ideology, life experiences, race, etc. — but also shaped by the institutional environment of Congress and the constraints posed by its partisan structure.

Keywords: proportional presence; ideological diversity; competing identities; political environment; descriptive representation; substantive representation; partisanship; legitimacy; New Institutionalism; masculinism

Chapter.  5634 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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