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A novel alternative. Book groups, women, and workplace networking

Alsop, Rachel


Rachel Alsop


Drawing on the results of a small qualitative research project involving four work-based book groups – three in the UK and one in the USA- this article examines the ways in which participation in workplace reading groups facilitates women’s networking within work organizations, in terms of both formal and informal as well as expressive and instrumental networking. It has long been recognized that women’s employment progression is hampered, in part, by their exclusion from male-dominated networks. Taking a gendered approach to the analysis of workplace networking, this study suggests that book groups can function as an alternative to traditional old boys’ networks, in some instances. Within the workplace the collective reading of literature, I suggest, can potentially function as a means to extend the social as well as the more career-focused opportunities of its participants.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Sep 12, 2015
Journal Women's studies international forum
Print ISSN 0277-5395
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 52
Pages 30-38
Keywords Women; Book groups; Networking; Reading; Literature; Gender; Work
Publisher URL
Copyright Statement ©2017, Elsevier. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published in: Women's studies international forum, 2015, v.52.


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