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Women's Lives around the World: A Global Encyclopedia

Listing some resources that supported the writing of the 2018 edition.

Women's Lives around the World: A Global Encyclopedia

This 4-volume encyclopedia is published by ABC-CLIO Greenwood which has a strong reputation as a publisher of encyclopedias, especially for high school and college students. Sets are typically purchased by high school and university libraries.
Entries give a country by country comparison of women's lives and includes sidebars of women's voices and key documents marking key developments in women's lives. Entries typically follow this outline: 
  1. Overview of country (religion, ethnicity, population stats)
    • overview of women in that country
  2. Girls and Teens (education k-university level, if appropriate, recreation, family roles, etc).
  3. Education
  4. Health
    1. Access to health care
    2. Maternal health
    3. Diseases and disorders
  5. Employment (typical careers/jobs, pay, etc)
  6. Family Life (marriage, sexuality, household roles/responsibilities)
  7. Politics (rights, participation in government, etc)
  8. Religious and Cultural Roles
  9. Issues (violence, inequality, trafficking, beauty standards, etc)
  10. Further Resources

In total, the set will include 150 countries. Each volume also contains sidebars on topics such as pop culture, religion, and violence against women and “women’s voices” sidebars. Additionally, each volume includes primary documents, such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, and facts and figures tables for more cross-national comparisons of key topics.

The editors donated the $10,000 contributor budget to the National Women’s Studies Association for the Alison Piepmeier Book Award prize recognizing a groundbreaking monograph in women, gender, and sexuality studies that makes significant contributions to feminist disability studies scholarship.

Editors and Contact

General Editor Susan Shaw,

Volume 1: Africa and the Middle East edited by Kryn Freehling-Burton,

Volume 2: The Americas edited by Jane Nichols,

Volume 3: Asia and the Pacific edited by Patti Duncan,

Volume 4: Europe edited by Nancy Barbour,

Previous Edition

Check to see if your institution has a copy the earlier edition of the encyclopedia: Walter, Lynn. The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Women's Issues Worldwide. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2003.