Pearls, Politics, & Power

How Women Can Win and Lead

by Madeleine M. Kunin

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“Here’s the book we’ve been waiting for—an insider’s view of the role of women in politics by one of America’s most distinguished public servants. Governor, federal executive, ambassador, Madeleine Kunin has seen it all. And her keen eye and her deep understanding of the challenge of gender in wielding power has produced a wonderfully insightful book that should be read by every woman—and man—who wants to lead.”
Robert B. Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor, Professor of Public Policy, University of California at Berkeley

Pearls, Politics, and Power PearlsPoliticsPoweris a call to action for new political engagement and leadership from the women of America. Informed by conversations with elected women leadersfrom all levels, former three-term Vermont Governor and Ambassador to Switzerland Madeleine M. Kunin asks: What difference do women make? What is the worst part of politics, and what is the best part? What inspired these women to run, and how did they prepare themselves for public life? How did they raise money, protect their families' privacy, deal with criticism and attack ads, and work with the good old boys?


Kunin’s core message is that America needs an infusion of new leadership to better address the major problems of our time. To see how women can achieve that goal, she combines her personal experience in politics; the lessons of past women’s movements; the stories of young women today who have new ideas about their role in society; and interviews with a wide range of women in positions of power, looking for clues to their leadership, as well as the effects of gender stereotyping. She interviews Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, analyzes her campaign, and addresses the question: “Is the country ready?” Other interviewees include U.S. Representatives Loretta Sanchez, Linda Sanchez, Deborah Pryce, and Tammy Baldwin, and U.S. Senators Susan Collins, Amy Klobuchar, and Carol Moseley Braun, and Governors Kathleen Sibelius and Janet Napolitano.


"Kunin gives us thoughtful advice on how women can lead change. A wonderful, insightful book."
Donna E. Shalala, former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services

The next generation of women will be inspired to lead by seeing women like Nancy Pelosi wielding the gavel, and seeing themselves reflected in the portraits in statehouses, courthouses, corporate and university boardrooms, and the White House. Pearls, Politics, and Power will help ensure that this inspiration is not soured or deflected, but channeled into successful candidacies by America’s leaders of tomorrow.
What will it take for women to assume their rightful places in the political corridors of power?

"Madeleine Kunin makes an impassioned and informed plea for women, especially younger women, to enter politics. There is no doubt in my mind that our country and the world would be a far better place if the 'feminine values' of compassion and nurturing were to achieve their rightful place in our nation's governance. As she says, it’s a wonderful thing to donate $10 to fight breast cancer, but it’s a far more powerful thing to shift millions of dollars of government money to finding a cure."
Ben Cohen, co-founder, Ben & Jerry's

About the Author

Madeleine M. Kunin was the first woman governor of Vermont, and served as the Deputy Secretary of Education and Ambassador to Switzerland under President Bill Clinton. She is the author of Living a Political Life and is currently a Marsh Scholar Professor-at-Large at the University of Vermont and lectures on history and women’s studies. She also serves as president of the board of the Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC), a nongovernmental organization that she founded in 1991. She lives in Burlington, Vermont.

 Item Information:

  Edition: Paperback   ISBN: 9781933392929
  Edition: Hardcover  ISBN: 9781603580106

  Pages: 224
  Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing
  Release Date: 2008-04-01

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