Women's and Gender Studies

Stats and Facts

Gender and Politics

  • The United States is 90th in the world in terms of women in national legislatures.
  • Women hold 17%of the seats in the House of Representatives (the equivalent body in Rwanda is 56.3% female).
  • Only 34 women have ever served as governors compared to 2319 men.

Gender and Business

  • Women earn only 77.4 cents for each dollar a man makes doing the same job.
  • Women hold only 3% of clout positions in the mainstream media.
  • Women are merely 3% of Fortune 500 CEOs.
  • Women comprise 7% of directors and 13% of film writers in the top 250 grossing films.

Gender and Education

  • 56% of undergraduates are women, compared to 44% of men.
  • Women have been earning more bachelor’s degrees than men since 1982 and they have been earning more master’s degrees than men since 1981.

Gender and The Body

  • The number of cosmetic surgical procedures performed on youth 18 or younger more than tripled from 1997 to 2007.
  • Liposuctions nearly quadrupled, and breast augmentations increased nearly six-fold in the same 10-year period.
  • 53% of 13 year old girls are unhappy with their bodies. That number increases to 78% by age 17.
  • 65% of American women and girls report disordered eating behaviors.
  • Studies estimate that 13% to 25% of youth have some history of self-injury, such as cutting, and most studies show that cutting is more common with girls.
  • 17% of teens engage in cutting and self-injurious behavior.

Gender and Violence

  • About 25% of girls will experience teen dating violence.
  • 25% of women are abused by a partner during their lifetime in the U.S.
  • 1 in 6 women are survivors of rape or attempted rape.
  • 15% of rape survivors are under the age of 12.

Gender and Risk

  • The U.S. has the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the industrialized world—twice as high as the UK, 4 times as high as Germany, and 8 times as high as Japan.
  • Rates of depression among women and young girls have doubled in the past ten years.
  • Rates of depression are the same among boys and girls until puberty, but twice as many women are diagnosed as depressed post-puberty.
  • While girls are twice as likely to think about suicide, boys are four times more likely to actually die from suicide.


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Women’s & Gender Studies In The News

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