Thursday, February 9, 2006
Running as a Woman: How Stereotypes Influence the Conduct and Consequences of Political Campaigns
Weiss Center, Rubendall Recital Hall, 12:00 PM
Women, Media and Politics
Stern Center, Great Room, 7:00 PM
Issue in Context
Throughout the course of history, women have been the subject of oppression and countless stereotypes. Over the past few decades, general views of women have begun to change drastically. Women now are able to hold professional positions and command respect in a manner they were not able to in the early part of the century. In regards to electoral politics, however, the success of women tends to be directly correlated to stereotypical images of female candidates and the prominent issues of the day. The manner in which the general public perceives the capabilities and liabilities of today’s female candidate can greatly affect the operation and outcome of a political campaign. Additionally, stereotypes have a tendency to influence such aspects of campaigns as media coverage, the candidates’ behavior, and voters’ opinions. They may also shape the electoral climate, providing women with an advantage in some settings and a disadvantage in others.
The recent elections of female candidates around the globe combined with the emphasis of female leadership by America ‘s current administration, has revolutionized the role of women in the political sphere. Individuals must now decide how to balance traditional notions of femininity with the rapidly changing political climate of the day.
About the Speaker
Dr. Kim Fridkin is a professor of political science at Arizona State University. Dr. Fridkin began her career at ASU in 1989 after receiving her B.A., M.A., and Ph. D. from the University of Michigan . She has written articles for several periodicals including the American Political Science Review, American Journal of Politics, and the Journal of Politics. She is also the co-author of No Holds Barred: Negative Campaigning in U.S. Senate Campaigns, as well as The Spectacle of U.S. Senate Campaigns. In addition, Dr. Fridkin is the author of The Political Consequences of Being a Woman. Her current research includes negative campaigning, women and politics, and civic engagement. Dr. Fridkin serves as an editorial board member for the American Journal of Political Science, the American Political Science Review and the American Politics Quarterly.