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Sharing the Work: What My Family and Career Taught Me about Breaking Through (and Holding the Door Open for Others)

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The tumultuous life and career of a woman who fought gender bias on multiple fronts--in theory and in practice, for herself and for us all. "Myra Strober's Sharing the Work is the memoir of a woman who has learned that 'having it all' is only possible by 'sharing it all, ' from finding a partner who values your work as much as you do, to fighting for family-friendly pol The tumultuous life and career of a woman who fought gender bias on multiple fronts--in theory and in practice, for herself and for us all. "Myra Strober's Sharing the Work is the memoir of a woman who has learned that 'having it all' is only possible by 'sharing it all, ' from finding a partner who values your work as much as you do, to fighting for family-friendly policies. You will learn that finding allies is crucial, blending families after divorce is possible, and that there is neither a good time nor a bad time to have children. Both women and men will find a friend in these pages." --Gloria Steinem Myra Strober became a feminist on the Bay Bridge, heading toward San Francisco. It is 1970. She has just been told by the chairman of Berkeley's economics department that she can never get tenure. Driving home afterward, wondering if she got something out of the freezer for her family's dinner, she realizes the truth: she is being denied a regular faculty position because she is a mother. Flooded with anger, she also finds her life's work: to study and fight sexism, in the workplace, in academia, and at home. Strober's generous memoir captures the spirit of a revolution lived fully, from her Brooklyn childhood (and her shock at age twelve when she's banished to the women's balcony at shul) to her groundbreaking Stanford seminar on women and work. Strober's interest in women and work began when she saw her mother's frustration at the limitations of her position as a secretary. Her consciousness of the unfairness of the usual distribution of household chores came when she unsuccessfully asked her husband for help with housework. Later, when a group of conservative white male professors sputtered at the idea of government-subsidized child care, Strober made the case for its economic benefits. In the 1970s, the term "sexual harassment" had not yet been coined. Occupational segregation, quantifying the value of work in the home, and the cost of discrimination were new ideas. Strober was a pioneer, helping to create a new academic field and founding institutions to establish it. But she wasn't alone: she benefited from the women's movement, institutional change, and new federal regulations that banned sex discrimination. She continues the work today and invites us to join her.


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The tumultuous life and career of a woman who fought gender bias on multiple fronts--in theory and in practice, for herself and for us all. "Myra Strober's Sharing the Work is the memoir of a woman who has learned that 'having it all' is only possible by 'sharing it all, ' from finding a partner who values your work as much as you do, to fighting for family-friendly pol The tumultuous life and career of a woman who fought gender bias on multiple fronts--in theory and in practice, for herself and for us all. "Myra Strober's Sharing the Work is the memoir of a woman who has learned that 'having it all' is only possible by 'sharing it all, ' from finding a partner who values your work as much as you do, to fighting for family-friendly policies. You will learn that finding allies is crucial, blending families after divorce is possible, and that there is neither a good time nor a bad time to have children. Both women and men will find a friend in these pages." --Gloria Steinem Myra Strober became a feminist on the Bay Bridge, heading toward San Francisco. It is 1970. She has just been told by the chairman of Berkeley's economics department that she can never get tenure. Driving home afterward, wondering if she got something out of the freezer for her family's dinner, she realizes the truth: she is being denied a regular faculty position because she is a mother. Flooded with anger, she also finds her life's work: to study and fight sexism, in the workplace, in academia, and at home. Strober's generous memoir captures the spirit of a revolution lived fully, from her Brooklyn childhood (and her shock at age twelve when she's banished to the women's balcony at shul) to her groundbreaking Stanford seminar on women and work. Strober's interest in women and work began when she saw her mother's frustration at the limitations of her position as a secretary. Her consciousness of the unfairness of the usual distribution of household chores came when she unsuccessfully asked her husband for help with housework. Later, when a group of conservative white male professors sputtered at the idea of government-subsidized child care, Strober made the case for its economic benefits. In the 1970s, the term "sexual harassment" had not yet been coined. Occupational segregation, quantifying the value of work in the home, and the cost of discrimination were new ideas. Strober was a pioneer, helping to create a new academic field and founding institutions to establish it. But she wasn't alone: she benefited from the women's movement, institutional change, and new federal regulations that banned sex discrimination. She continues the work today and invites us to join her.

30 review for Sharing the Work: What My Family and Career Taught Me about Breaking Through (and Holding the Door Open for Others)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    CC to economist friends Rachel, PJ and Hannah

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Interview with the author on the Freakonomics podcast: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/gende... Interview with the author on the Freakonomics podcast: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/gende...

  3. 5 out of 5

    ashes ➷

    My sister recommended this book as I ranted about how being perceived as a woman felt like living in a box, and it did help. I'm giving it 4 stars because while it was remarkably well written for someone who isn't a professional writer by trade, nonetheless it's posed as a kind of Feminist Text while being markedly uncaring about race and class. I found the book entertaining to read and generally absorbing but often difficult to take seriously when Strober would (for example) wave away the fact My sister recommended this book as I ranted about how being perceived as a woman felt like living in a box, and it did help. I'm giving it 4 stars because while it was remarkably well written for someone who isn't a professional writer by trade, nonetheless it's posed as a kind of Feminist Text while being markedly uncaring about race and class. I found the book entertaining to read and generally absorbing but often difficult to take seriously when Strober would (for example) wave away the fact that her black, poor nanny 'needed' to work for her to support her own children, who would be taken care of by other family members. I wish I could say "read other reviews by black and poor people on this subject," but it looks like there aren't many reviews yet... nonetheless, I don't want to speak too much on the topic given that it's not really my place.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Yordanos

    This is a 4/4.5. I’d recommend this book to all! Myra Strober is a formidable woman, economist, scholar, feminist, and an all around boss! The obstacles she faced and overcame, the incredible feats she accomplished, the scholarship and overall work she pioneered in areas such as economics, feminist studies, gender research, business and management, leadership, intersectional studies, etc is phenomenal. It’s unfortunate it took me this long to discover her and her poignant career but better late t This is a 4/4.5. I’d recommend this book to all! Myra Strober is a formidable woman, economist, scholar, feminist, and an all around boss! The obstacles she faced and overcame, the incredible feats she accomplished, the scholarship and overall work she pioneered in areas such as economics, feminist studies, gender research, business and management, leadership, intersectional studies, etc is phenomenal. It’s unfortunate it took me this long to discover her and her poignant career but better late than never. This book offers powerful and pragmatic takeaways that One rarely considers/encounters. It also illuminates on origin stories of some of the groundbreaking programs and movements that have benefited many, such as the Stanford Clayman Gender Research Institute and the Feminist Studies degree program. A must read for sure!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Eilean

    Myra Strober is a talented storyteller that paints captivating scenes from her life in this memoir. I loved reading her stories about her childhood and encounters at work; they reminded me of my own experiences and how societal norms and expectations have influenced how I was brought up and my own beliefs about a woman's role in society. Great book if you are interested in the history of females in the workforce, economics, or gender equality. Myra Strober is a talented storyteller that paints captivating scenes from her life in this memoir. I loved reading her stories about her childhood and encounters at work; they reminded me of my own experiences and how societal norms and expectations have influenced how I was brought up and my own beliefs about a woman's role in society. Great book if you are interested in the history of females in the workforce, economics, or gender equality.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Adrienne Harris

    I wish more academics wrote memoirs! After reading Strober's memoir, I gained a clearer picture of the battles female academics fought decades ago and it inspired me to continue fighting for better working and more equitable conditions for academic families and for contingent faculty. I wish more academics wrote memoirs! After reading Strober's memoir, I gained a clearer picture of the battles female academics fought decades ago and it inspired me to continue fighting for better working and more equitable conditions for academic families and for contingent faculty.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Sharing the Work: What My Family and Career Taught Me about Breaking Through (and Holding the Door Open for Others) by Myra Strober paperback ill

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Short, fascinating, infuriating, inspiring!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

    "It interests me that institutions make women responsible for policing their own subordination." p57 "There would be far less foolishness, far less drivel about governments needing to balance their budgets in recessions, "just like families." What is required to get out of a depression or recession is more spending ... Recessions are NOT the time for governmental austerity. They are the time for public expenditures on repair to infrastructure, education and so on." p83 "It interests me that institutions make women responsible for policing their own subordination." p57 "There would be far less foolishness, far less drivel about governments needing to balance their budgets in recessions, "just like families." What is required to get out of a depression or recession is more spending ... Recessions are NOT the time for governmental austerity. They are the time for public expenditures on repair to infrastructure, education and so on." p83

  10. 4 out of 5

    Elaine Koyama

    Great memoir of living through the women's movement and all the battles fought to make more opportunities sprout later. I lived through this time, and was leaving Stanford when CROW was beginning on campus. Little did I know as I embarked on my career in the Midwest that Strober was fighting in the midst of it on the West Coast. I look forward to comparing notes with her someday. Great memoir of living through the women's movement and all the battles fought to make more opportunities sprout later. I lived through this time, and was leaving Stanford when CROW was beginning on campus. Little did I know as I embarked on my career in the Midwest that Strober was fighting in the midst of it on the West Coast. I look forward to comparing notes with her someday.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lorraine S. Fox

  12. 4 out of 5

    Rivka

  13. 5 out of 5

    Trudy

  14. 4 out of 5

    Monica

  15. 4 out of 5

    Yoko Okano

  16. 4 out of 5

    Audreygold

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tais Taber

  18. 5 out of 5

    Byrnenicole

  19. 5 out of 5

    Donna Hall

  20. 5 out of 5

    Trish

  21. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Jacobs

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Will

  23. 5 out of 5

    Josephine Duque

  24. 5 out of 5

    Brandi Tanaka

  25. 4 out of 5

    Beza

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kelsie

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mary Alice

  28. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jon A. Fredrikson

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ana

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