Constituting and Substantively Representing Women: Applying New Approaches to A UK Case Study

SL Childs, Paul Webb, Sally Marthaler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

Abstract

With critical mass theory increasingly rejected as an explanatory theory of women's substantive representation, new conceptual approaches and methods are being suggested that look toward the role of multiple actors and multiple sites of representation, and which point to the importance of critical actors. Within them, there is particular concern with what constitutes the substantive representation of women (SRW). At the same time, the constitutive representation of gender (CRG) has been advanced as a complementary facet of representation. This article offers the first case study of both the SRW and the CRG in the parliamentary setting. It does so through an over-time analysis of the British Conservative Party. By examining general election manifestos (1992–2005), it considers how the Conservative Party constitutes women's concerns, the relations between the sexes, and the pledges the party makes “for women”. The research, furthermore, suggests that in studying the SRW and the CRG, scholars should both look at changes in the representative claims and pledges that are made by individual political actors, such as political parties, and explore the relationship between the two facets of representation.
Translated title of the contributionConstituting and Substantively Representing Women: Applying New Approaches to A UK Case Study
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199 - 223
Number of pages24
JournalPolitics and Gender
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2010

Bibliographical note

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

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