English (United States)
This paper examines the legislative and rhetorical behavior of the women of the 112th Congress within three policy areas that drew unusual amounts of attention during the 2010-2012 period: women's reproductive healthcare, equal pay for equal work, and violence against women. I framed my research within the political theories of descriptive and substantive representation, under the hypothesis that women representatives face disproportionate pressure from both the public and from their parties to take strong leadership positions on these so-called "women's issues" and are able to exert disproportionate influence on the policy outcomes. Finally, I take a look at the unique political risk that Republican women face when the expectations of their female constituents and their party leadership come into conflict.
Black, Maria Julia Nelson, "Making the Personal Political: The Role of Descriptive and Substantive Representation in the "War on Women"" (2013). Honors Theses - All. 1031.
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