Affirmative Advocacy: Race, Class, and Gender in Interest by Dara Z. Strolovitch

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By Dara Z. Strolovitch

The usa boasts ratings of companies that provide an important illustration for teams which are marginalized in nationwide politics, from ladies to racial minorities to the negative. the following, within the first systematic examine of those enterprises, Dara Z. Strolovitch explores the demanding situations and possibilities they face within the new millennium, as waning felony discrimination coincides with expanding political and financial inequalities within the populations they represent.

Drawing on wealthy new info from a survey of 286 agencies and interviews with 40 officers, Strolovitch unearths that groups too usually prioritize the pursuits in their such a lot advantaged contributors: male instead of lady racial minorities, for instance, or prosperous instead of terrible girls. yet Strolovitch additionally reveals that many businesses attempt to treatment this inequity, and she or he concludes through distilling their most sensible practices right into a set of rules that she calls affirmative advocacy—a type of illustration that goals to beat the entrenched yet frequently refined biases opposed to humans on the intersection of a couple of marginalized team. Intelligently combining political concept with refined empirical equipment, Affirmative Advocacy might be required examining for college kids and students of yankee politics.

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Extra info for Affirmative Advocacy: Race, Class, and Gender in Interest Group Politics

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2 At the beginning of the twenty-first century, there were more than seven hundred organizations representing women, racial minorities, and low-income people in national politics (Strolovitch 2006). These include more than forty African American organizations, more than thirty Asian Pacific American organizations, and well over one hundred women’s organizations. Organizations such as these continue to make up only a small portion of the broader interest group universe that counts more than seventeen thousand national organizations and that encompasses organizations representing much wealthier and more powerful interests such as business, professional, financial, ideologically conservative, and foreign policy organizations (Baumgartner and Leech 1998; Gray and Lowery 1996; Heaney 2004; Schlozman and Burch forthcoming; Tichenor and Harris 2005).

There are many other policy categorization schemes through which we might analyze organizations’ choices about issue advocacy, such as whether the issues addressed are economic or social,regulatory,distributive,orredistributive(Peterson1981),orwhether 32 · chapter two they have to with domestic policy or foreign policy. That each of these alternatives would tell us something important about interest groups, representation, and public policy need not undermine the value of the story that I tell using the typology that I put forward here.

Organizations such as these provide an institutionalized voice to and compensatory representation for the concerns of formerly excluded groups that still have insufficient formal representation in national politics (Boles 1991). Because of their mandate to give voice to the voiceless, the explosion in the ranks of these organizations brought with it the promise of a new era in which the interest group system would ensure—as the pluralists claimed— that everyone, even those underserved by electoral politics, would be represented (Baumgartner and Jones 1993).

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