Telling stories out of court: narratives about women and workplace discrimination

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Cornell University Press, 2008 - Business & Economics - 241 pages
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Telling Stories Out of Court Narratives about Women and Workplace Discrimination Edited by Ruth O'Brien Foreword by Liza Featherstone "Few of the countless real-life stories of workplace discrimination suffered by men and women every day are ever told publicly. This book boldly and eloquently rights that wrong, going where no plaintiff testimony could ever dare because these stories are often too raw, honest, ambiguous, and nuanced to be told in court or reported in a newspaper."-from the Foreword Telling Stories Out of Court reaches readers on both an intellectual and an emotional level, helping them think, feel, and share the experiences of women who have faced sexism and discrimination at work. It focuses on how the federal courts interpreted Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. To do so, this book uses fiction. Offering insights that law texts alone cannot, the short stories collected here-all but two written for this volume-help readers concentrate on the emotional content of the experience with less emphasis on the particulars of the law. Grouped into thematic parts titled "In Their Proper Place," "Unfair Treatment," "Sexual Harassment," and "Hidden Obstacles," the narratives are combined with interpretive commentary and legal analysis that anchors the book by revealing the impact this revolutionary law had on women in the workplace At the same time, the stories succeed on their own terms as compelling works of fiction, from "LaKeesha's Job Interview," in which a woman's ambition to move from welfare to work faces an ironic obstacle, to "Plato, Again," in which a woman undergoing treatment for cancer finds her career crumble under her, to "Vacation Days," which takes the reader inside the daily routine of a nanny who works at the whim of her employer.

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Contents

In Their Proper Place
14
Dream
21
LaKeeshas Job Interview
29
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Ruth O'Brien is Professor of Government at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Chair of the Political Science M.A./PH.D Program at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is author of Crippled Justice: The History of Modern Disability Policy.