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Because of sex : one law, ten cases, and fifty years that changed American women's lives at work /

by Thomas, Gillian (Lawyer) [author.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: New York, NY : St. Martin's Press, 2016.Edition: First edition.Description: xi, 291 pages ; 25 cm.ISBN: 9781137280053; 1137280050.Subject(s): Sex discrimination in employment -- Law and legislation -- United States -- Cases | Sex discrimination against women -- Law and legislation -- United States -- Cases | Women's rights -- United States -- Cases | Sex discrimination against women -- Law and legislation | Sex discrimination in employment -- Law and legislation | Women's rights | United States | Trial and arbitral proceedings | Trials, litigation, etc | Trial and arbitral proceedings
Contents:
Women and children last : Phillips v. Martin Marietta Corporation (1971) -- Breaking through the thin blue line : Dothard v. Rawlinson (1977) -- Live long(er) and prosper : City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power v. Manhart (1978) -- A hostile environment : Meritor Savings Bank, FSB v. Vinson (1986) -- "A floor, not a ceiling" : California Federal Savings & Loan Association v. Guerra (1987) -- Making "lady partner" : Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins (1989) -- Potentially pregnant : International Union, United Auto Workers of America v. Johnson Controls, Inc. (1991) -- Taking it all the way to "Sandra Fucking Day O'Connor" : Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc. (1993) -- Don't shoot the messenger : Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Company v. White (2006) -- "Everyone deserves a safe delivery" : Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. (2015).
Summary: "The 1964 Civil Rights Act is best known as a monumental achievement of the civil rights movement, but it also revolutionized the lives of American women. Title VII of the law made it illegal to discriminate "because of sex." But Congress gave little guidance about how much it wanted to change in a "Mad Men" world where women played mainly supporting roles. It was up to the Supreme Court, then, to endow that simple phrase with meaning, and its decisions set off seismic changes in how the nation sees working women - women like Ida Phillips, denied an assembly line job because she had small children and was assumed to be unreliable; or Kim Rawlinson, who fought to be an Alabama prison guard because she believed that being 5'3" and 115 pounds didn't mean she couldn't do a "man's job"; or Mechelle Vinson, whose years of sexual abuse by her boss showed that sexual harassment is just as much a denial of equal opportunity as a lower paycheck; or Ann Hopkins, voted down for partnership at Price Waterhouse because the men in charge thought she needed "a course at charm school." But if there is much to celebrate in America today, where women are Supreme Court justices and presidential contenders, there is also a long way to go. Peggy Young, whose case was heard by the Supreme Court in December 2014, was forced onto unpaid leave while pregnant because UPS refused to accommodate a temporary lifting restriction imposed by her doctor. To understand this and other remaining obstacles to women's full equality on the job - from "mommy tracking" to unequal pay to a sex-segregated workforce - we need to know how we got here. Because Of Sex tells that story, and gives an unsung group of heroines their due."--Publisher information.
List(s) this item appears in: Women's History
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Item type Home library Collection Shelving location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Books Books Altadena Main Library
Adult Collection Adult NonFiction 344.0141 THO (Browse shelf) Available 39270004525451

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

"Meticulously researched and rewarding to read...Thomas is a gifted storyteller." -- The New York Times Book Review

Best known as a monumental achievement of the civil rights movement, the 1964 Civil Rights Act also revolutionized the lives of America's working women. Title VII of the law made it illegal to discriminate "because of sex." But that simple phrase didn't mean much until ordinary women began using the law to get justice on the job--and some took their fights all the way to the Supreme Court. Among them were Ida Phillips, denied an assembly line job because she had a preschool-age child; Kim Rawlinson, who fought to become a prison guard--a "man's job"; Mechelle Vinson, who brought a lawsuit for sexual abuse before "sexual harassment" even had a name; Ann Hopkins, denied partnership at a Big Eight accounting firm because the men in charge thought she needed "a course at charm school"; and most recently, Peggy Young, UPS truck driver, forced to take an unpaid leave while pregnant because she asked for a temporary reprieve from heavy lifting.

These unsung heroines' victories, and those of the other women profiled in Gillian Thomas' Because of Sex , dismantled a "Mad Men" world where women could only hope to play supporting roles; where sexual harassment was "just the way things are"; and where pregnancy meant getting a pink slip.

Through first-person accounts and vivid narrative, Because of Sex tells the story of how one law, our highest court, and a few tenacious women changed the American workplace forever.

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Women and children last : Phillips v. Martin Marietta Corporation (1971) -- Breaking through the thin blue line : Dothard v. Rawlinson (1977) -- Live long(er) and prosper : City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power v. Manhart (1978) -- A hostile environment : Meritor Savings Bank, FSB v. Vinson (1986) -- "A floor, not a ceiling" : California Federal Savings & Loan Association v. Guerra (1987) -- Making "lady partner" : Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins (1989) -- Potentially pregnant : International Union, United Auto Workers of America v. Johnson Controls, Inc. (1991) -- Taking it all the way to "Sandra Fucking Day O'Connor" : Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc. (1993) -- Don't shoot the messenger : Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Company v. White (2006) -- "Everyone deserves a safe delivery" : Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. (2015).

"The 1964 Civil Rights Act is best known as a monumental achievement of the civil rights movement, but it also revolutionized the lives of American women. Title VII of the law made it illegal to discriminate "because of sex." But Congress gave little guidance about how much it wanted to change in a "Mad Men" world where women played mainly supporting roles. It was up to the Supreme Court, then, to endow that simple phrase with meaning, and its decisions set off seismic changes in how the nation sees working women - women like Ida Phillips, denied an assembly line job because she had small children and was assumed to be unreliable; or Kim Rawlinson, who fought to be an Alabama prison guard because she believed that being 5'3" and 115 pounds didn't mean she couldn't do a "man's job"; or Mechelle Vinson, whose years of sexual abuse by her boss showed that sexual harassment is just as much a denial of equal opportunity as a lower paycheck; or Ann Hopkins, voted down for partnership at Price Waterhouse because the men in charge thought she needed "a course at charm school." But if there is much to celebrate in America today, where women are Supreme Court justices and presidential contenders, there is also a long way to go. Peggy Young, whose case was heard by the Supreme Court in December 2014, was forced onto unpaid leave while pregnant because UPS refused to accommodate a temporary lifting restriction imposed by her doctor. To understand this and other remaining obstacles to women's full equality on the job - from "mommy tracking" to unequal pay to a sex-segregated workforce - we need to know how we got here. Because Of Sex tells that story, and gives an unsung group of heroines their due."--Publisher information.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Acknowledgments (p. ix)
  • Introduction (p. 1)
  • 1 Women and Children Last: Phillips v. Martin Marietta Corporation (1971) (p. 7)
  • 2 Breaking Through the Thin Blue Line: Dothard v. Rawlinson (1977) (p. 32)
  • 3 Live Long(er) and Prosper: City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power v. Manhart (1978) (p. 60)
  • 4 A Hostile Environment: Meritor Savings Bank, FSB v. Vinson (1986) (p. 81)
  • 5 "A Floor, Not a Ceiling": California Federal Savings & Loan Association v. Guerra (1987) (p. 106)
  • 6 Making "Lady Partner": Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins (1989) (p. 127)
  • 7 Potentially Pregnant: International Union, United Auto Workers of America v. Johnson Controls, Inc. (1991) (p. 148)
  • 8 Taking It All the Way to "Sandra Fucking Day O'Connor": Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc. (1993) (p. 169)
  • 9 Don't Shoot the Messenger: Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Company v. White (2006) (p. 187)
  • 10 "Everyone Deserves a Safe Delivery": Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. (2015) (p. 206)
  • Epilogue (p. 229)
  • Notes (p. 247)
  • Index (p. 281)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Thomas, senior staff attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union's Women's Rights Project and former litigator of U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission cases, knows whereof she writes in this eminently readable book. Title and subtitle say it all, as Thomas explores the genesis and evolution of Title VII, a groundbreaking chapter of the 1964 Civil Rights Act that prohibits (among other things) discrimination "because of sex." Throughout its 50-year history, Title VII has enabled women to claim equal rights and equitable treatment in the workplace. As Thomas demonstrates, enforcement of the statute has been as difficult as its creation. The book introduces readers to ten remarkable women who pursued workplace injustice all the way to the Supreme Court, where they finally triumphed. These landmark cases-Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson (1986), Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins (1989), and Harris v. Forklift Systems (1993) among them-chart the troubled journey to justice, as interpretation and concomitant ramifications of Title VII were fiercely litigated. VERDICT A riveting read, particularly for fans of Gail Collins's When Everything Changed. [See Prepub Alert, 9/28/15.]-Lynne Maxwell, West Virginia Univ. Coll. of Law Lib., Morgantown © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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