Summary of All the Single Ladies

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8 Overall

7 Applicability

9 Innovation

8 Style


Journalist Rebecca Traister provides a thorough historical overview of the role single women played in forming the contemporary United States. She draws on extensive research and personal interviews to create a quantitative and qualitative assessment of issues unmarried women face at all income levels and across racial and geographic borders. Traister organizes chapters by distinct topics – class, economics, marriage and sex – to make information readily available. While always politically neutral, getAbstract recommends her examination of a rising demographic to consultants, HR professionals, and business leaders seeking valuable background on the power and challenges of unmarried women.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How single women helped change the United States,
  • What social and economic restrictions challenge unmarried women, and
  • What business and government policy changes could change their lives for the better.

About the Author

Award-winning journalist Rebecca Traister covers women in politics and business for New York magazine, The New York Times, The Washington Post and Elle. She wrote Big Girls Don’t Cry, a New York Times Notable Book of 2010.



The Spinster
The rise of today’s single American women springs from incremental progress made by earlier generations. Colonial America enforced “coverture,” making a woman’s “legal, economic and social identity” related to that of her husband. Adult single women had no legal place. In ...

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    Megan Merbach 2 years ago
    This summary presented a lot of interesting oxymorons within workplace women. For example, whereas women with children were less likely to be hired for a job, single women often find themselves in poverty. Great read!