When Everything Changed: Book summary and reviews of When Everything Changed by Gail Collins

When Everything Changed

The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present

by Gail Collins

When Everything Changed by Gail Collins X
When Everything Changed by Gail Collins
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Book Summary

Picking up where her previous successful, and highly lauded book, America's Women, left off, Gail Collins recounts the sea change women have experienced since 1960. A comprehensive mix of oral history and Collins's keen research, this is the definitive book about five crucial decades of progress, told with the down-to-earth, amusing, and agenda-free tone this beloved New York Times columnist is known for. The interviews with women who have lived through these transformative years include an advertising executive in the 60s who was not allowed to attend board meetings that took place in the all-male dining room; and an airline stewardess who remembered being required to bend over to light her passengers' cigars on the men-only 'Executive Flight' from New York to Chicago.

We, too, may have forgotten the enormous strides made by women since 1960 - and the rare setbacks. "Hell yes, we have a quota [7%]" said a medical school dean in 1961. "We do keep women out, when we can." At a pre-graduation party at Barnard College, "they handed corsages to the girls who were engaged and lemons to those who weren't." In 1960, two-thirds of women 18-60 surveyed by Gallup didn't approve of the idea of a female president. Until 1972, no woman ran in the Boston Marathon, the year when Title IX passed, requiring parity for boys and girls in school athletic programs (and also the year after Nixon vetoed the childcare legislation passed by congress). What happened during the past fifty years - a period that led to the first woman's winning a Presidential Primary - and why? The cataclysmic change in the lives of American women is a story Gail Collins seems to have been born to tell.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Collins can be deadly serious and great fun to read at the same time. A revelatory book for readers of both sexes, and sure to become required reading for any American women's-studies course." - Kirkus Reviews

"Collins captures the conundrums of feminism's success ... but the book will probably resonate most for her generational peers." - Publishers Weekly

This information about When Everything Changed was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

Reader Reviews

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Becky

When Everything Changed
This is a must read for all women - especially those under 50! Even though I went through much of these events, this chronographs the amazing events from 1960 to the present. Younger women may not know of a time when the wearing of slacks was not condoned in many work places, when the man of the family could be the only one to get a credit card, when women worked for about 1/5 of what a man made at the same job. And, much more!!!

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Author Information

Gail Collins Author Biography

Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

Gail Collins started out in journalism in Conneticut, where she founded the Connecticut State News Bureau, which provided coverage of the state capitol and Connecticut politics. Collins joined the New York Times in 1995 and has worked there almost continuously since then as an editorial board member, op-ed columnist, and the first woman ever appointed editor of the Times editorial page.

Collins is the author of Scorpion Tongues: Gossip, Celebrity and American Politics, The Millennium Book (which she co-authored with her husband, Dan Collins), America's Women: 400 Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates and Heroines, and it's sequel When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present. Ms. Collins' most recent book is "As Texas Goes: How the Lone Star ...

... Full Biography

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  • America's Women jacket
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