The Norm of Tradition: Gender Subordination and Women's Exclusion in International Relations

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The survey data in “Women in International Relations” explains that women are underrepresented in international relations as a whole, and that this underrepresentation only grows at the higher ranks of our profession. In observing the “gender gap” in IR, the essay offers an interesting and important overview of the possible reasons for women's underrepresentation and points out some meaningful differences between women and men in terms of perspective in the discipline, publication productivity, and teaching style, among other things. Near the beginning of the essay, the authors set up alternative explanations for women's marginal position in the discipline. They note that while feminist scholars relate women's marginalization to gender subordination, “other scholars suggest that the content of women's scholarship contributes to their marginalization” (see p. 122). I would argue that women's differences and gender subordination might not be competing explanations for women's marginalization. Instead, it might be that gender subordination can explain both women's differences and women's underrepresentation in the field.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-180
Number of pages8
JournalPolitics & Gender
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 Mar 2008


  • gender
  • women's exclusion
  • gender inequality
  • international relations
  • TRIP survey

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