Argues that institutional change must accommodate women’s professional and personal life stages.
Staging Women's Lives in Academia demonstrates how ostensibly personal decisions are shaped by institutions and advocates for ways that workplaces, not women, must be changed. Addressing life stages ranging from graduate school through retirement, these essays represent a gamut of institutions and women who draw upon both personal experience and scholarly expertise. The contributors contemplate the slipperiness of the very categories we construct to explain the stages of life and ask key questions, such as what does it mean to be a graduate student at fifty? Or a full professor at thirty-five? The book explores the ways women in all stages of academia feel that they are always too young or too old, too attentive to work or too overly focused on family. By including the voices of those who leave, as well as those who stay, this collection signals the need to rebuild the house of academia so that women can have not only classrooms of their own but also lives of their own.
Michelle A. Massé is Dean of the Graduate School, Professor of English and Women's and Gender Studies at Louisiana State University, and President of the Women's Caucus for the Modern Languages. She is the coeditor (with Katie J. Hogan) of Over Ten Million Served: Gendered Service in Language and Literature Workplaces, also published by SUNY Press. Now retired, Nan Bauer-Maglin was Professor of English at Borough of Manhattan Community College, City University of New York, and Academic Director of the City University of New York Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies. Her books include Final Acts: Death, Dying, and the Choices We Make (coedited with Donna Perry).