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    The grit in the Oyster? Women’s parliamentary organizations & the substantive representation of women

    Childs, Sarah and Allen, P. (2019) The grit in the Oyster? Women’s parliamentary organizations & the substantive representation of women. Political Studies 67 (3), pp. 618-638. ISSN 0032-3217.

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    This article addresses a foundational question of political representation: how representatives act for those they represent. In a shift away from analyses of individual representatives’ attitudes and behaviour, we identify women’s parliamentary organizations (WPOs) as potential critical sites and critical actors for women’s substantive representation. Offering one of the most in depth studies todate, our illustrative case is the longstanding UK Parliamentary Labour Party’s Women’s Committee (WPLP). With a unique data set, and using both quantitative and qualitative methods, we systematically examine the WPLP’s efforts to substantively represent women over more than a decade. We find that the WPLP sustains its focus on a small number of women’s issues interacts with party leadership to advance women’s interests in a feminist direction. Our findings capture processes of political change, a frequently under-explored stage in studies of substantive representation. We close by identifying the potential for comparative research in this area.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Women’s substantive representation, critical mass, critical actors, political change, gender and politics, feminizing, women’s parliamentary organizations
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Birkbeck Centre for British Political Life
    Depositing User: Sarah Childs
    Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2018 13:30
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:43


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