There has been much important work done in the past two decades in America on issues of under representation based on social differences such as race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, and age. While this scholarship has examined the ways in which women and racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities suffer disproportionately on measures of full citizenship, social class and culture have received relatively little attention. This new study addresses various manifestations of social class and cultural difference as well as their implications for political representation. The analysis demonstrates how three of the most influential feminist theorists who write about political representation conceive of group representation, identify the problems that group representation claims to remedy, and assess the strengths and weaknesses associated with these models. Using theoretical argument, the volume suggests practical electoral reform in order to encourage new and emancipating forms of political engagement. It will be of value to those interested in public policy and governance, political theory, gender studies and law and society in general.
Angela D. Ledford is an Associate Professor of Political Science at The College of Saint Rose, where she teaches subjects including political theory, American government, and gender politics.
’Drawing on and extending key feminist insights on difference and diversity, Angela Ledford makes an important intervention that convincingly details how changing our political system to account for gender, race, class and other lines of division can make it simultaneously more democratic and equitable. This is theoretical writing of the first order that could not be more practical. And it is exactly the kind of thinking our politics now so desperately needs.’ Sanford F. Schram, Bryn Mawr College, USA 'Angela Ledford's new book has much to offer. Its engagement with feminist theory offers salient new insights. Its focus on the interplay between class and culture also illuminates the plight of marginalized groups with respect to their political representation (or lack of it). Most importantly, however, Professor Ledford provides positive suggestions for electoral reform - that are well worth thinking about.' Stephen Eric Bronner, Rutgers University, USA