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Sex Stereotyping in Employment: Can the Center Hold?

01 May 2006

The Labor Lawyer, Volume 21, Number 3

It is now more than twenty years since Ann Hopkins was denied promotion to partner in her accounting firm, in part because her aggressiveness did not comport to gender stereotypes of the way a woman is supposed to behave. She was advised that her chances of promotion would be enhanced in the future if she would only be more feminine. When her claim reached the Supreme Court in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, a plurality of the justices found this to be sex stereotyping, which showed that Hopkins's gender played a motivating part in the decision to defer her promotion.

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