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Boulet, Jac-André and Laval Lavallée.

Ottawa, Economic Council of Canada, c1984. 81pp, paper, $6.95, ISBN 0-660-11692-8. Distributed by Canadian Government Publishing Centre, Supply and Services Canada, Ottawa, Ont., K1A 0S9.

Grades 11 and up
Reviewed by Thomas F. Chambers

Volume 14 Number 1
1986 January

It is well known that women in Canada earn less than men, even when they do the same work. This has become a hot political topic as women urge governments to change what they consider to be an improper fact of life. Those interested in this subject will find a lot of useful information in this book. It confirms that women do have duller, poorer paying jobs and that little progress has been made since the early 70s in changing this situation.

Jac-André Boulet is a researcher with the Economic Council of Canada. Laval Lavallée has a similar job at the Canadian Industrial Renewal Board. They undertook this study to find out what has happened to the economic status of women in the work force. Are they trying to enter careers usually filled by men? Are men moving into careers held by women? Have women been successful in reducing the wage gap between men and women? Are they entering the highly-paid professional jobs? To find answers-, the authors relied totally on statistics provided by Statistics Canada. This may have seemed the logical thing to do, but the heavy reliance on figures means that their study is too factual. There is not enough analysis of attitudes in Canada towards working women. This information could only have come from interviews. Pages of statistics can prove what you want them to. They cannot tell us how Canadians feel about the topic. It is their response that is the real key to the lower economic status of women.

Thomas F. Chambers, Canadore C.C., North Bay, Ont.
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