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An urgent analysis of global gender inequality and a passionately argued case for change by a pioneer in the movement for women's economic empowerment. 'A compelling and actionable case for unleashing women's economic power' Melinda Gates Women's economic development expert Linda Scott coined the paradigm-shifting concept of the 'double X economy' to describe both the shocki An urgent analysis of global gender inequality and a passionately argued case for change by a pioneer in the movement for women's economic empowerment. 'A compelling and actionable case for unleashing women's economic power' Melinda Gates Women's economic development expert Linda Scott coined the paradigm-shifting concept of the 'double X economy' to describe both the shocking gender inequalities that are built into our global economy, and the collective power of women that could be harnessed to combat those inequalities. Drawing on a wealth of sources including radical original research and vivid case studies, Scott reveals how economic subordination and exclusion are systemic for women in the developing and the developed worlds; and shows that by pulling women in as equal participants in the economy, we could address many of humankind's most pressing problems. Provocative, accessible and potentially game-changing, The Double X Economy is the feminist answer to Jeffrey Sach's The End of Poverty: both a work of expert analysis and an urgent call to action.


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An urgent analysis of global gender inequality and a passionately argued case for change by a pioneer in the movement for women's economic empowerment. 'A compelling and actionable case for unleashing women's economic power' Melinda Gates Women's economic development expert Linda Scott coined the paradigm-shifting concept of the 'double X economy' to describe both the shocki An urgent analysis of global gender inequality and a passionately argued case for change by a pioneer in the movement for women's economic empowerment. 'A compelling and actionable case for unleashing women's economic power' Melinda Gates Women's economic development expert Linda Scott coined the paradigm-shifting concept of the 'double X economy' to describe both the shocking gender inequalities that are built into our global economy, and the collective power of women that could be harnessed to combat those inequalities. Drawing on a wealth of sources including radical original research and vivid case studies, Scott reveals how economic subordination and exclusion are systemic for women in the developing and the developed worlds; and shows that by pulling women in as equal participants in the economy, we could address many of humankind's most pressing problems. Provocative, accessible and potentially game-changing, The Double X Economy is the feminist answer to Jeffrey Sach's The End of Poverty: both a work of expert analysis and an urgent call to action.

30 review for The Double X Economy: The Epic Potential of Empowering Women

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lou

    The Double X Economy is a leading thinker's groundbreaking examination of women's economic empowerment and although it is pretty dense and full of fascinating research, I thoroughly enjoyed it, but if you're after a light read this is not it as you need to be fully engaged the whole time in order to get the most out of it. Linda Scott coined the phrase “Double X Economy” to address the systemic exclusion of women from the world financial order. In The Double X Economy, Scott argues on the streng The Double X Economy is a leading thinker's groundbreaking examination of women's economic empowerment and although it is pretty dense and full of fascinating research, I thoroughly enjoyed it, but if you're after a light read this is not it as you need to be fully engaged the whole time in order to get the most out of it. Linda Scott coined the phrase “Double X Economy” to address the systemic exclusion of women from the world financial order. In The Double X Economy, Scott argues on the strength of hard data and on-the-ground experience that removing those barriers to women’s success is a win for everyone, regardless of gender. Scott opens our eyes to the myriad economic injustices that constrain women throughout the world: fathers buying and selling daughters against their will; husbands burning brides whose dowries have been spent; men appropriating women’s earnings and widows’ land; banks discriminating against women applying for loans; corporations paying women less than men; men treating women as their intellectual inferiors due to primitive notions of female brain development; governments depriving women of affordable childcare; and so much more. As Scott takes us from the streets of Accra, where sex trafficking is widespread, to American business schools, where women are routinely patronised, the pervasiveness of the Double X Economy becomes glaringly obvious. But Scott believes that this rampant problem can be solved. She proposes concrete actions and urges her readers to rise up and join the global movement for women’s economic empowerment that is gaining momentum by the day. This is an important and accessible read if you are willing to put the time in; the research is comprehensive and utterly shocking and there were a plethora of times where I felt my blood boiling. There were also times I became emotional at the discrimination faced by woman all over the world. As an egalitarian, I believe in equality for all so this was the perfect book to fire me up and if you're interested in the topic of equality or feminism then I implore you to pick this up. It's a tough but necessary read. It’s high time women were treated as equals and not made to feel inferior as they currently are. Many thanks to Faber & Faber for an ARC.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Martha

    I wouldn't normally write reviews for books that I DNF, but there were a couple of things I wanted to say about this one. *Content warning: sexual violence* I read c.45% of this book and my main reason for stopping was the repeated use of the phrase 'forced sex'. The first time it happened, it was a reference to a story about a woman from Kenya who was widowed, and her in-laws 'paid a herdsman to have sex with [her] against her will and without a condom'. I was incredibly uncomfortable with this I wouldn't normally write reviews for books that I DNF, but there were a couple of things I wanted to say about this one. *Content warning: sexual violence* I read c.45% of this book and my main reason for stopping was the repeated use of the phrase 'forced sex'. The first time it happened, it was a reference to a story about a woman from Kenya who was widowed, and her in-laws 'paid a herdsman to have sex with [her] against her will and without a condom'. I was incredibly uncomfortable with this use of 'sex against her will', but the formatting of the page suggested this could be a quote from another source and so I kept going. However, the next time was just part of the author's own words, and that was enough for me. There is no such thing as 'forced sex' or 'sex against her will'. If sex is forced or against someone's will, it is no longer sex, it is rape. End of story. There is no other term for it, and I found it disappointing that an academic scholar talking about the economic oppression of women (and its links with violence against women and girls) would use such terminology. This particular time it was used immediately after the phrase 'war rape' as if rape in war is rape, but rape outside of war is forced sex. The use of language is critical, particularly when it comes to sexual violence, as we have a long global history of denying the existence of rape and rape culture, so we must call it out for what it is. Linked to that, I was disappointed not to see a content warning on this book given the frequent references to sexual and physical violence - the discovery of 'widow cleansing' (an act of sexual violence) was a particularly abhorrent example that many would likely find disturbing and triggering, so more consideration should have been given to the impact of this information on the book's audience. In what I read so far, I also found the book to be quite heteronormative. Here I concede that it would be unfair of me to deem the whole book to be this way as I did not finish it and perhaps she may touch on LGBTQ women later in the book. However, in what I read so far, it felt that the automatic assumption was that women and men were paired off in all situations. For example: "In Sweden for instance, 24 per cent of women have experienced violence at home; in Afghanistan, it's 87 per cent. Certainly, 24 per cent of Swedish women enduring violence is much too many. But let's focus on the 76 per cent of Swedish men who have not hurt their partners, and indeed, have probably never been violent at all, compared with 13 per cent of Afghans we might say that about." I couldn't access the sources she referenced for this so was unable to check the data, but I don't think it's a coincidence that those statistics all add up to 100% - i.e. only 24% of Swedish women have experienced violence because 76% of Swedish men have not been violent. Aside from being a huge oversimplification (i.e. one man is violent toward one woman, when surely it's more likely that one violent man will be violent to multiple women), it also assumes that all 24% of those women had experienced violence at the hands of a man because they must have a male partner. Indeed, the concept of women's economic suppression being known as 'The Double X Economy' is problematic in itself, as it ties gender to biology and reinforces the gender binary, thereby excluding trans women and non-binary people. Indeed, a 2018 study by Crossland Solicitors found that 1 in 3 UK employers would not hire a transgender person, Vanessa Sheridan, author of The Complete Guide to Transgender in the Workplace indicates that trans unemployment in the USA is twice the national average. Therefore, any idea of women's economic empowerment that does not include trans women is problematic considering the ways in which they too are economically oppressed. Finally, I want to make clear that there is a lot of content in this book that I would believe to be a very useful and valid contribution to the work on women's economic empowerment. It is written in an accessible way and if we can bring more attention to the significant gender economic inequality that exists, that is important and a very good thing, so this book is by no means without merit. In summary, I again want to make very very clear that I did not finish this book, therefore my criticisms relating to heteronormativity and the possible exclusion of trans and non-binary people have that major caveat, and I wouldn't normally write a review like this for a book that I haven't finished. What I do stand by is the problematic use of language to describe sexual violence in this book and the lack of content warnings to alert readers to the plethora of references to violence against women that are contained in this book. I believe this is a valid criticism whether I finished the book or not, and I want to alert other readers who may not wish to read a book that contains those kinds of references. I must thank the publisher for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review, I wouldn't normally give up on a book that I have been asked to review, but in this case I just couldn't continue.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kayleigh

    The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off. This book made me unbelievably angry, and then it made me grateful. I consider myself lucky to have lived in a time that is relatively kind to women but this is a well reasoned, concise and excellent take which we can all use as a harsh reminder that we do still have a very long way to go to reach true equality.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jordan

    I was really impressed with the content of the book. However, I felt the tone was needlessly confrontational. What's actually going on in many countries on the path to development is upsetting and fascinating, digging down into the detail on inequality within developed economy's was really helpful. It's the first book I've come across that brings together different strands of arguments and pulls it together. For example, how exactly motherhood contributes to the gender wage gap and how to fix it. I was really impressed with the content of the book. However, I felt the tone was needlessly confrontational. What's actually going on in many countries on the path to development is upsetting and fascinating, digging down into the detail on inequality within developed economy's was really helpful. It's the first book I've come across that brings together different strands of arguments and pulls it together. For example, how exactly motherhood contributes to the gender wage gap and how to fix it. The last chapter is also full of actionable steps that an individual can take to help rather than just asking you to write to your MP or sign a petition. Regarding the tone: As a self-confessed conservative I felt my choices and beliefs were being needlessly attacked by the author at times. I understand that she's angry and wants people to wake up and do something, but if you're trying to get me on-side an unnecessary remark about the stupidity that led to Brexit etc isn't helpful. This book has changed the way I look at things, but I won't be able to convince other people who are less invested in the issue to read it and feel the same way. Finally, I think there are annoying generalisations scattered throughout the text when it comes to culture. The one that stands out is a reference to the TV show Dragon's Den, it's implied the show only features male venture capitalists when each series includes at least one female VC.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alexis

    This was a fascinating and infuriating read about women's role in the economy and how we can improve it. It was a refreshing change from many feminist books because Scott uses a much wider net--she draws from countries all over the world, not just well off Western nations, for her examples. Her work in non-Western countries tends to be amongst the poorest, which makes the contrast sharp, but her theme is not that the West is better: it's that it's all variations on an ancient theme to remove wom This was a fascinating and infuriating read about women's role in the economy and how we can improve it. It was a refreshing change from many feminist books because Scott uses a much wider net--she draws from countries all over the world, not just well off Western nations, for her examples. Her work in non-Western countries tends to be amongst the poorest, which makes the contrast sharp, but her theme is not that the West is better: it's that it's all variations on an ancient theme to remove women's economic power. She cuts right through common arguments about the pay gap and education--for example, she points out that removing factors like children and care obligations proves only that women achieve equal pay if they act like men, since those factors are so heavily skewed towards women. Just as importantly she points out how much women's economics matter to the economy as a whole. Not only do women earn money, they spend it. In the US, 67% of consumer spending is determined by women. Research in developing countries has shown that giving women more control over family finances not only benefits them but their children. I would have liked a little more attention paid to the economic value of women's caring labor, instead of just talking about universal daycare (important, but not the only point). Women's economic value is systematically undervalued because their domestic labor is not included and not thought to be an economic contribution.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Imme

    With a hint of being the Sapiens of women, this book goes through the history of women and their role in society from hunter gatherer societies through the agricultural revolution, from chimpanzees and bonobos to how religion exported different treatment of women. I mainly picked up this book because of its partial focus on developing countries, speaking about economic empowerment through women’s savings groups in Bangladesh and farmer cooperatives in Tanzania. The Double X Economy is based on th With a hint of being the Sapiens of women, this book goes through the history of women and their role in society from hunter gatherer societies through the agricultural revolution, from chimpanzees and bonobos to how religion exported different treatment of women. I mainly picked up this book because of its partial focus on developing countries, speaking about economic empowerment through women’s savings groups in Bangladesh and farmer cooperatives in Tanzania. The Double X Economy is based on the concept that currently (mostly women’s) unpaid work is not calculated in monetary terms, and hence deemed less important. If things like family care were included in GDP, would perception change? Whereas Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez changed my perspective on how the systems we live in are based more on men than on women, The Double X Economy added depth and detail.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Anandh Sundar

    A data backed book to explain why women are lagging behind, and what can be done. Instead of relying on anecdotes and pathos, the author uses a blend of research and first hand stories to explain what can be better. I especially liked the examples of supply chain integration, Walmart, women farmers, sanitary napkins, financial inclusion etc.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Janis

    It's dense enough, but it wouldn't have to feel that way if the research and anecdotes were more obviously tied to the points. Granted, the avalanche of support for her arguments is completely in line with the intent of the book. It's artfully, purposefully written. Don't expect this to read like Steinem. There's tons of work to do... this feels fractal-like. It's rather huge. #FreeBritney

  9. 4 out of 5

    Arnab

    An excellent, excellent book about the very real costs of patriarchy on our economies and societies. If I were to summarize the central argument of this book, I would take up the quote often attributed to "SJWs" or "Feminazis", "all men are bad", and amend it to "quite a lot of men, and almost all men in power, are bad". Highly recommended.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Nora

    After reading the first few pages, I decided to skim through the rest. This book relies heavily on numbers to make its case. I believe it would be helpful as a reference when arguing for women empowerment. Other than that, it was so painful to read especially once you realize how true it is.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Ebling

    A very thorough explanation of how women are excluded from society through their economic disenfranchisement and a convincing case for how and why the world needs to make a change.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Darya

    The book taught me to be thankful for what I have in life in the first place. Although I am coming from a background where I had to work hard to achieve what I have, still many women do not make it and this is heartbreaking. The author has done a Great job in describing the Double C economy ruled by men. In some countries situations are extremely frustrating and in some also quite upsetting however at a different level. Worth reading.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Stefan Liljenström

    Outstanding book. Extremely important, a must-read for all regardless of gender. Empower women, empower the world!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jocelyn

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laura

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laura Caley

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

  18. 4 out of 5

    Taras Leshkovych

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Birnie

  20. 4 out of 5

    Carolina

  21. 4 out of 5

    Terfa

  22. 4 out of 5

    Julia

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jeff Reitsma

  24. 5 out of 5

    Fran Timms

  25. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Bechis

  26. 5 out of 5

    Carina

  27. 4 out of 5

    Robin D

  28. 4 out of 5

    Candace

  29. 4 out of 5

    Linda

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sophie Taylor

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